Complaint over Nkandla chimney - report

2014-01-03 11:23
Zuma's Nkandla homestead. (Picture: City Press)

Zuma's Nkandla homestead. (Picture: City Press)

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Johannesburg - A chimney erected on a thatched roof on President Jacob Zuma's private Nkandla homestead in KwaZulu-Natal may pose a safety threat, the Mail & Guardian reported on Friday.

Social worker John Clarke was reported to have laid a complaint with the public protector, saying the length of the chimney was a fire hazard as it was too short.

More than R206m of taxpayers' money was spent on security upgrades on the property.

In his complaint Clarke was quoted as saying: "[This] suggests that President Zuma may be more at risk from the apparent incompetence of members of his own Cabinet than any external threat."

The paper reported it was possible that the object seen on the roof was not a chimney, but part of an elaborate defence against chemical or biological weapons.

Documents showed that in the early stages of the project in 2009 it was proposed that a filtered air supply to a secure section of a tunnel complex beneath the compound be built. The air supply could withstand a gas attack.

The air intake was to be concealed as a high chimney at the main house.

Among the safety features at the house was what authorities said was a "fire pool". The fire pool, however, largely resembled a swimming pool.

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