'Puzzling' that president would instruct deputy director: Nhleko

2015-07-29 11:37
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Parliament - It would be "puzzling" to have a head of state instruct a deputy director to do something, Police Minister Nathi Nhleko told the Parliamentary ad hoc committee on Nkandla on Wednesday.

He was referring to a police memo that suggested President Jacob Zuma authorised the renovations in Nkandla.

The instruction was signed by a Senior Superintendent LF Linde.

"Under normal circumstances the senior superintendent is [on] the level of a deputy director. It would be quite puzzling that you would have a head of state instructing a deputy director... to then undertake this kind of instruction."

‘By instruction of the president...’

The letter was part of a file handed over to the committee by Nhleko last week before it conducted its in loco inspection of Zuma's Nkandla homestead.

The letter read: "By instruction of the State President, President Zuma, the existing house at Nkandla currently accommodate [sic] SAPS members must be converted as part of the president's household.

"To cater for the needs of the members currently accommodated in the house as refer above [sic], additional bachelor flats need to be added to the needs assessment previously provided to your department."

At the time committee chairperson Cedric Frolick said the letter had to be interrogated.

Nhleko told the committee on Wednesday it was a matter which was dealt with by the Special Investigating Unit (SIU) in its report.

‘It is official’

The SIU interviewed Linde, who stated that these were his own words and not that of the president.

"This is a matter of public record. It is official," Nhleko said.

This meant he was not truthful when he wrote "by the instruction of the state president".

He said the SIU, in the same report, said: "There appears to be a disturbing tendency to invoke the name of the president to move the project along and to influence decisions."

The letter from Linde contained an attachment with a revised SA Police Service request.

"This clarifies one question. The complex of what is now known as the 20 houses plus one were requested by the SAPS and the national defence force," Nhleko said.

Read more on:    jacob zuma  |  nathi nhleko  |  nkandla upgrade  |  parliament 2015

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