Nzimande upset over corruption coverage

2012-02-21 21:01

Cape Town - Reports on corruption by South Africa's media are often not a "reflection of the truth", Higher Education Minister Blade Nzimande told MPs on Tuesday.

Responding in the National Assembly to members' statements on government's tackling of corruption, he said it was necessary to distinguish between efforts that were reported and those that were not.

"I think it's important that in this House we do not allow narrow opposition propaganda to distort the truth.

"We must distinguish between activities of corruption that are reported by the media; and actions that are taken by government to expose corruption, which does not appear in the media."

There had been many corruption investigations instigated by government, through the special investigating unit (SIU).

"What often the media says in this country is not the reflection of the truth. And often it is in line with what the opposition is saying," Nzimande said.

Last week, President Jacob Zuma told the House that South Africa was the only country with a "programme" to fight corruption.

Replying to points raised in the National Assembly during debate on his state of the nation address, he said it was "important to emphasise that most of the corruption you read about in the media is exposed as a result of the work of government and its agencies".

"What we should remember is that South Africa is the only country that has a programme to fight corruption. It's not being fought anywhere else," Zuma said.

"And that's why you can't read about corruption in other countries. It's a reality. South Africa has a programme to fight corruption and it is fighting it."

Zuma told the House at the time that the anti-corruption task team, consisting of representatives from security agencies, was investigating 45 corruption-related priority cases against 151 people.

Assets of more than R600m had been seized, and more than R1bn worth of assets obtained through illicit means had been forfeited in the past two years.

In addition, the SIU was probing cases arising from 23 proclamations, relating mainly to procurement irregularities in government departments nationally, provincially, and also in some public enterprises.

- SAPA

Read more on:    siu  |  jacob zuma  |  blade nzimande  |  corruption  |  media
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