Zuma’s PW comparison ‘raises disturbing questions’

2014-10-20 16:31

President Jacob Zuma’s reported comparison between the construction of George airport and money spent on his Nkandla home raises “disturbing questions”, says the FW de Klerk Foundation.

“If he is correctly reported, the president’s comments raise disturbing questions regarding his views on the distinction between proper state expenditure on bona fide projects and expenditure that will result in his own enormous and unjustifiable enrichment,” said executive director Dave Steward today.

The state had a duty to provide official accommodation and transportation for a president while in office and had a duty to provide security to retired presidents, he said.

“However, something must be seriously wrong if the provision of such security leads to state expenditure that vastly exceeds the value of the property that is being protected as well as expenditure on the security of other former presidents,” he said.

Beeld reported today that Zuma compared the construction of George airport for apartheid-era head of state PW Botha, and his own home in Nkandla.

Answering a question during a Sunday lunch to mark media freedom day, he said he lived in a state house without paying rent and travelled on state planes without paying for it.

“Is this an unfair advantage?” he asked.

When it was pointed out that his Nkandla dwelling was a personal home, not state property, Zuma said it was the state’s duty to protect the president and deputy president.

Zuma said the airport in George was not built for economic reasons.

“It is because Botha lived there [Wilderness].”

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