ANC won't apologise for Nkandla - Mantashe

2014-03-20 12:13
ANC secretary general Gwede Mantashe and deputy secretary general Jessie Duarte are seen during a media conference on the ANC's response to Public Protector Thuli Madonsela's Nkandla report. (MyANC via Facebook)

ANC secretary general Gwede Mantashe and deputy secretary general Jessie Duarte are seen during a media conference on the ANC's response to Public Protector Thuli Madonsela's Nkandla report. (MyANC via Facebook)

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LIVE: ANC responds to Nkandla report

2014-03-20 09:43

Watch live as the ANC responds to Public Protector Thuli Madonsela’s report about the upgrades at President Jacob Zuma’s homestead.WATCH

Johannesburg - The ANC will not apologise for the findings of the Nkandla report, its secretary general said on Thursday.

"If there is a need for an apology, it can't be the ANC. If need be, it can be from the president or it may be by the relevant ministers," Gwede Mantashe told reporters in Johannesburg.

"The ANC does not have a house called Nkandla. It has a house called Chief Albert Luthuli."

Also, members of the public would not accept the apology because they would say it was a cover-up, said Mantashe.

Nkandla visit

He said the African National Congress would invite members of the media on a visit to President Jacob Zuma's Nkandla home in KwaZulu-Natal.

ANC deputy secretary general Jesse Duarte said ANC officials wanted to see the Nkandla upgrades for themselves.

Public Protector Thuli Madonsela released her report on costly security upgrades at Nkandla on Wednesday, saying Zuma should have asked questions about the scale, costs, and affordability of security upgrades which could end up being as much as R240m.

She found that Zuma and his family unduly benefited from upgrades.

Mantashe said the ruling party's national executive committee was meeting next week.

"We have a scheduled NEC next week... obviously we may talk about the issue [Nkandla]."

Pay back

Mantashe said the ANC needed to decide if it would encourage Zuma to follow Madonsela's recommendation to pay back some of the money.

"The public protector said the president must pay a reasonable percentage... and the question is whether we will encourage him to do so," said Mantashe.

Earlier, Mantashe said the ANC will call on Zuma to answer questions on the Nkandla report if necessary,

"If there are issues that the president will have to answer, the ANC will be able to call the president to answer questions on any matter," he said.

"I don't know who told you the president has not been called to account... or won't be called to account. You are making a particular assumption."

But he said the ANC believed investigations should be focused on "people who are highlighted in the report".

The State must pursue everybody who fraudulently used state funds, he said.

"All those people must be brought to book, they must be pursued. And that excludes nobody."

He said the ANC's view was to use the report "as a guide" instead of conducting a witch hunt.

 


- SAPA

Read more on:    anc  |  jacob zuma  |  gwede mantashe  |  nkandla upgrade  |  government spending  |  politics
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