Proof of Nkandla bond exists – Presidency

2012-11-20 14:21

Proof that President Jacob Zuma has a bond on his residence in Nkandla, in northern KwaZulu-Natal, will be provided, the Presidency has said.

“The evidence will be readily made available to an authorised agency or institution empowered by the law of the land,” spokesperson Mac Maharaj said in a statement today.

“It is not being released to media to respect the privacy of the president as well as customer-institution confidentiality.”

Maharaj reaffirmed that Zuma did have a bond on the residence with one of the national banks.

He said the presidency had noted media reports which implied that Zuma had misled the National Assembly about it.

“We urge the media to respect the agencies that are investigating the various aspects of the security enhancements at the residence, as speculations and rumour-mongering will not assist the process.”

City Press reported on Sunday that there was no bond registered on Zuma’s home.

It alleged the land on which Zuma’s home stands was owned by the Ingonyama Trust, headed by King Goodwill Zwelithini.

It reported that the trust managed 32% of all land in KwaZulu-Natal on behalf of the state, and for the benefit of its occupants.

Belinda Benson, Ingonyama Trust’s property manager, told the newspaper as far as she was aware no bond had been registered against the property.

On Thursday, Zuma told Parliament he was still paying off a bond for the home.

The Mail & Guardian online today reported that Zuma did have a R900 000 bond on his Nkandla home.

Zuma reportedly first applied for the home loan on the residence in 2001, when it was worth between R650 000 and R750 000 according to a bank valuation and insurance assessments.

By December 2002, he had been granted the home loan by First National Bank (FNB), despite being in dire financial straits, not having a formal lease on the land, and a bank policy not to bond property owned by tribal trusts, according to the report.

The existence of the loan, and some details around it, were confirmed in the original indictment against Schabir Shaik, then Zuma’s financial adviser.

The National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) said the loan was only granted because of a R400 000 surety signed by businessman Vivian Reddy, a known Zuma funder.

Reddy reportedly confirmed on the weekend that he loaned Zuma money for the first phase of construction, and the loan had since been paid back.

Banks reportedly did not grant bonds on land under tribal control, typically because they could not guarantee they would be able to recover lent money if a lender defaulted.

FNB did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the mechanism of such loans.

On Thursday last week chief executive Michael Jordaan said client confidentiality precluded it from talking about the details of an individual.

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