ANC deny arms deal report on Mbeki

2008-07-25 00:00

Cape Town — The ANC yesterday strongly denied that a document cited in Independent Group newspapers yesterday — which highlights President Thabo Mbeki’s role in the arms deal and downplays the role of Jacob Zuma — is a product of the ANC.

ANC spokeswoman Jessie Duarte said yesterday that “no such document” has been produced by the task team set up by the ANC National Executive Committee (NEC) to compile information about the arms deal.

Duarte criticised individuals “whether in the ANC or outside”, who are “peddling” documents in the media as ANC documents.

The newspapers claimed yesterday that Mbeki comes under fire in the “explosive” document for his role in the multibillion rand arms deal. The newspaper said advisers to the NEC’s arms deal task team are “far less harsh” on Zuma, with some saying the ANC president should be given amnesty for his role.

The task team, under ANC deputy president Kgalema Motlanthe, was set up to probe how the arms deal affected Zuma and is being assisted by advisers, including Judge Willem Heath and University of Venda vice chancellor Professor Muxe Nkondo. According to the newspapers, in a working document that has not been adopted by the NEC and which has no official status within the ANC, the advisers have questioned Mbeki’s “compromising secret meetings” with the French arms company Thint, accused of bribing Zuma.

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