DA doesn't accept police memo was a lie

2015-07-29 14:42
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Cape Town - DA MP Glynnis Breytenbach on Wednesday disputed Police Minister Nathi Nhleko's explanation regarding a police memo that suggested President Jacob Zuma authorised the renovations in Nkandla.

The minister said Senior Superintendent LF Linde had lied in the letter that he had received instructions from the president.

He also said the president would never communicate with someone who was at least seven ranks lower than him.

Breytenbach said she did not believe that Linde had written the letter.

"You and I both know that Mr Linde didn't write this letter.

"The divisional commissioner of supply chain management did. Mr Linde is just the poor fool who does the signing and writing."

Rank dispute

She said as it was no action had been taken against Linde, who was sitting in his Silverton office and had two years to go until pension.

Breytenbach also disputed Linde's rank.

"A senior superintendent, I cannot agree with you, is not a junior official... he is in fact a full colonel."

Nhleko in response said there was nothing senior about Linde in relation to the matter in question.

"How on earth is it possible for a head of state to do that?" he asked.

Nhleko and Public Works Minister Thulas Nxesi were appearing before the committee to answer questions on their reports into spending at Nkandla.

Breytenbach also questioned whether the "experts" which were relied on in Nhleko's report on the security features at Nkandla were actually experts.

"Nothing here suggests that any of these people were experts.

"You refer to other experts whose reports I don't find and they are the one I have more trouble with."

Nhleko report a rehash - Breytenbach

An example of this was the cultural expert, Breytenbach said.

Nhleko told Breytenbach she had the file he had submitted.

"You also have the written narration by a cultural expert for example. Also a narration by the fire expert people in terms of what they think after they have assessed the situation.

"There is absolutely no problem in making that available," he said.

Breytenbach said Nhleko and Nxesi's  reports were largely a rehash of the Public Protector and the SIU's reports.

"[This is] said with greatest respect, both of you rely on the president for your jobs and to a certain degree are controllable.

"[The] two people who should be here are the public protector and the SIU. They have security of tenure and they are harder to get rid of. They have more independence," she said.

Unable to ignore reports

All the ministers had done was reply to these reports.

"It's not even hearsay. It is less reliable than hearsay. If you want your report to carry any credibility and for us to accept it, we need to verify what you have said with the Public Protector and head of the SIU."

Nhleko said there was no way the Public Protector and SIU reports could be ignored.

"I wouldn't agree with your view that there has been re-hashing."

He also disagreed with her assumption that he relied on the president to keep his job.

"In my response, in our conduct as South Africans we can only rely on one thing and one thing alone and that is constitutional principles.

"If I were to begin to see individuals, you would compromise principles underlying society and watering things down. I swore to be faithful to the public of SA and would obey and respect all laws and hold office with dignity and be true and faithful," Nhleko said.

Read more on:    da  |  jacob zuma  |  glynnis breytenbach  |  parliament 2015  |  nkandla upgrade

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