SA may soon know Zuma's Nkandla bill

Cape Town - The total cost that President Jacob Zuma must cough up for non-security-related upgrades to his Nkandla homestead will likely be in the public domain.

This after National Treasury issued a statement on Thursday indicating that it will meet the June deadline set by the Constitutional Court order regarding the president's private home.

In a landmark ruling on March 31 2016, the court gave Zuma 105 days to repay the “reasonable cost” of non-security-related upgrades to his home in KwaZulu-Natal.

Chief justice Mogoeng Mogoeng found that Zuma failed to “uphold, defend and respect” the constitution when he ignored Public Protector Thuli Madonsela's recommendation in her report titled Secure in Comfort.

She found that Zuma unduly benefitted from the R246m spent on so-called security upgrades to his home and recommended that he repay a reasonable portion of the money spent on features such as the swimming pool, amphitheatre, visitors’ centre, cattle kraal and chicken run.

“The National Treasury must determine a reasonable percentage of the costs of those measures which ought to be paid personally by the President (and)  ...  report back to this Court on the outcome of its determination within 60 days of the date of this order,” the highest court ordered

The deadline for the National Treasury is June 28 2016. The court ordered that Zuma make his payment 45 days hereafter.

"The National Treasury has concluded several steps and the assessment and final report will be submitted to the Constitutional Court in due course," the department said.

"A detailed account of the work that has been undertaken, including the methodology followed will be made public at an appropriate time."

Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan moved to assure South Africans after the ruling that his department will conducts its work ethically in its mandate given by the Constitutional Court to ascertain how much Zuma needs to pay back, he told journalist at the time, reported News24.
“I can assure South Africans that the process will be transparent, thorough and professional and within the rules of public finance management."

Gordhan added that a highly skilled team will be convened for the job. “We will constitute a team with the necessary technical expertise and experts including quantity surveyors and lawyers, to execute the mandate given to us by the ConCourt,” he said.

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