Parties react to 'damning' Nkandla report

2013-11-29 12:15
(Khaya Ngwenya, City Press)

(Khaya Ngwenya, City Press)

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Johannesburg - Opposition parties have reacted to the publication of the key findings of Public Protector Thuli Madonsela's provisional report into the multi-million rand upgrade to President Jacob Zuma's Nkandla homestead, calling for the president to be held fully accountable.

The Mail & Guardian on Friday reported that Madonsela's provisional report found that Zuma received substantial personal benefits from the upgrade, despite government earlier stating that the upgrade was essential for the president's security.

Madonsela found a swimming pool, visitors' centre, amphitheatre, cattle kraal, marquee area, extensive paving, and new houses for relatives included in the upgrade at "enormous cost" to the taxpayer.

Madonsela's report recommended the president be called to account by Parliament for violating the executive ethics code on two counts - failing to protect state resources, and misleading Parliament for suggesting he and his family had paid for all non-security-related features.

Corruption scandal

The Democratic Alliance said the provisional findings contained in the report "are so damning that, if accurate, they would warrant the most severe sanction of President Jacob Zuma's conduct".

DA parliamentary leader Lindiwe Mazibuko said in a statement on Friday that should the final report findings remain unchanged, she will consider tabling a motion to investigate Zuma in terms of Section 89 of the Constitution.

"This motion would result in a full investigation by Parliament into his conduct on two grounds, both contained in the Constitution, namely (a) being in violation of the Constitution or the law and (b) committing 'serious misconduct'.

"As more and more details surrounding Nkandlagate emerge, it is becoming increasingly clear that President Zuma is at the centre of one of the biggest corruption scandals in democratic South Africa. He must be accordingly held accountable by Parliament for his actions," Mazibuko stated.

Zuma misled public - UDM

In reaction to the news report, United Democratic Movement leader Bantu Holomisa said Zuma had misled Parliament and the public, and it was not useful for Madonsela's final report to be handed to the legislature.

Holomisa said police had to conduct a parallel investigation to get to the bottom of what happened at Nkandla.

"One thing is clear; President Zuma has misled Parliament and the nation. Unfortunately this person is not accountable to the electorate, but to Luthuli House, and the African National Congress must take responsibility for the actions of their deployee.

"For us to take this matter to Parliament is not going to work and we, instead, must send the police, the Hawks and the auditors to get to the bottom of this mess," he said.

Cope leader Mosioua Lekota said it backed Madonsela's reported recommendation that Zuma be made to repay money spent at Nkandla.

"The Congress of the People welcomes and supports to the hilt the Public Protector’s directive that President Jacob Zuma pay back public funds which was spend on his private retreat at Nkandla," he said.

- Sapa and News24

Read more on:    public protector  |  cope  |  da  |  udm  |  thuli madonsela  |  mosiuoa le­kota  |  lindiwe mazibuko  |  jacob zuma  |  bantu holomisa  |  nkandla upgrade  |  government spending  |  corruption  |  politics

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