Nkandla documents released

2013-07-05 12:01
(Khaya Ngwenya, City Press)

(Khaya Ngwenya, City Press)

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Johannesburg - The public works department has released 42 files with over 12 000 pages on President Jacob Zuma's Nkandla homestead upgrade to the Mail & Guardian, the newspaper reported on Friday.

They were disclosed following a request for information - under the Promotion of Access to Information Act - about public spending on Zuma's private residence at Nkandla in KwaZulu-Natal.

The request, submitted a year ago, pointed out that the act obliged the department to redact parts of the requested information related to security, while making the rest available.

The documents, released to the newspaper two weeks ago, related to bid evaluations, needs assessments, contracts awarded and their values, as well as documents indicating whether costs were allocated for public or private accounts.

Top secret

This report was declared top secret and closed to public scrutiny. The files contained numerous references to documents or annexures that had not been disclosed. It said there appeared to be no security-related basis for their redaction.

There was nothing in the Nkandla files that could not have been publicly disclosed, except for how senior officials and politicians "scrambled" to meet deadlines set by Zuma, and how short-cuts were taken on tendering processes.

Money was also shifted from other programmes to accommodate the unbudgeted spending.

The Mail & Guardian reported that the cost of the Nkandla homestead ballooned from a R27.8m plan in 2009 to a projected total of about R270m in October 2012.

The official expenditure as of June this year was R210.5m. This did not appear to include bills yet to be paid.

- The Mail & Guardian's Nkandla Documents.



- SAPA
Read more on:    public works  |  mail & guardian  |  jacob zuma  |  nkandla upgrade  |  government spending
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