Thuli Madonsela: ‘They tried to stop me’

2014-03-23 06:00

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Thuli Madonsela has spoken out in detail for the first time about how various ministers and state lawyers tried to bulldoze her into stopping the Nkandla investigation.

Madonsela said she had initially received great cooperation from the ministers and the presidency, but it all changed when she started asking tough questions at the beginning of last year.

“Then government departments started clubbing together. Suddenly, there was a group approach with an intention to frustrate the investigation. Departments like police, who had been providing us with documents, suddenly said the papers were unavailable. Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa asked me: ‘Why are you doing the investigation when there is a task team doing the same thing?’

“He said you cannot have two government institutions conducting the same investigation. He said the government task team had recommended that the SIU [Special Investigating Unit ] and the AG [Auditor-General] should do the investigation.

“So I had to explain to him that the SIU and AG were not internal but independent institutions. I had to ask him why government had started a new investigation [task team] when there was one under way.

“I explained that we had already started the investigation and resources were already invested in it. The investigation was also 90% complete.”

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