ANC concerned by Nkandla report handling

2013-11-05 07:09
ANC secretary general Gwede Mantashe. (File, Sapa)

ANC secretary general Gwede Mantashe. (File, Sapa)

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Johannesburg - The ANC is concerned by the manner in which Public Protector Thuli Madonsela has handled the provisional report on Nkandla, ANC secretary general Gwede Mantashe said on Monday.

He said in a statement that while the ANC respected the public protector’s office and acknowledged its work, the confusion shown by Mandonsela as to where the report should go worked on the psyche of the public.

It did so in a way that negatively reflected upon President Jacob Zuma.

Madonsela released the provisional report on the upgrade to Zuma's Nkandla homestead to limited parties on Friday.

On 21 October she expressed uncertainty about to whom she should hand the provisional report.

On 23 October, she questioned the government's delay in changing the law determining to whom she should hand reports concerning the presidency.

Irregularities in procurement process

Nkandla has been at the centre of controversy after it emerged that the public works department had approved upgrades to the homestead costing R206m.

When questions were raised about these upgrades, a task team from the public works department was set up. It later found irregularities in the procurement process for the upgrade.

"She has handled it in a manner that suggests that she is an interested party. In this regard, she has positioned the report in a manner that will work on the public psyche in a particular manner," Mantashe said.

"When the public protector finally released the report, she gave it to the ministers in the security cluster and excluded the president."

He said this on its own communicated volumes and then Madonsela released a statement that the public would be disappointed about the reports' findings, even before it was released.

Protecting interests?

"This begs the question: Who will be disappointed with the outcome of the interim report?" asked the secretary general.

"This therefore removes neutrality of the public protector and her conduct suggests that she is protecting interests of a particular section of society."

The implications of her conduct suggested that Zuma was guilty even before the report was officially released, Mantashe said.

"We would like to caution that this conduct carries a risk of delegitimising other chapter nine institutions and processes with the public protector's office being the only one standing," Mantashe said.

"We are eagerly awaiting the report to be published so that together with the report of the department, [it can] be taken forward."
Read more on:    anc  |  jacob zuma  |  gwede mantashe  |  thuli madonsela  |  nkandla upgrade

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