Johannesburg - The DA accused President Jacob Zuma
Thursday of undermining the public protector in his full three-page letter sent
to National Assembly Speaker Max Sisulu
The DA was in possession of the letter, which it said was
included in Parliament’s Announcements, Tablings and Committees (ATC) document.
In the letter, Zuma wrote there were "stark
differences" in the findings and the remedial action proposed by the
Public Protector's report and that of the inter-ministerial task team.
"This is clear from the reports as well as very
public pronouncements made by the respective parties," he wrote.
"In my experience in government I have not
encountered such an anomaly."
The DA said the response seemed to be attempting to
"cook up" a narrative about the validity of Public Protector Thuli
The opposition party accused Zuma of using the Special
Investigating Unit (SIU) as a "king-maker finding" to break an
invented deadlock between the two reports on the security upgrades to his
private home in Nkandla, KwaZulu-Natal.
Parliament confirmed on Wednesday it had received
comments from Zuma on Madonsela's report into the upgrades.
In a statement on Wednesday, announcing Madonsela's
deadline had been met, the presidency said Zuma had noted in his response that
three state agencies or institutions - the public protector, the justice, crime
prevention and security cluster of Cabinet, and the SIU - had all probed the
Waiting for SIU
Zuma said he would give full and proper consideration to
all the matters before him and, upon receipt of the SIU report, provide
Parliament with a further report on the decisive executive interventions he
SIU spokesperson Boy Ndala told Sapa on Wednesday that
his unit's investigation was still ongoing and would be completed at the end of
next month. He said the status of the report - shown on the SIU's website as
"completed" - was not correct.
On Wednesday evening, the SIU changed the status on the
report to "ongoing".
Last month, Madonsela found Zuma and his family unduly
benefited from security upgrades to his homestead and recommended that he pay
back a percentage of the non-security upgrades.
The DA said on Thursday it was seeking legal opinion on
whether it could force Zuma to abide by the public protector's recommendations.
"The DA will not let the president undermine the
Office of the Public Protector, or escape accountability," the party said.
"He owes South Africa a full explanation and
Parliament must now use its powers to ensure that this happens."
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