'I'm sorry, I'll pay for Nkandla': Zuma

By admin
01 April 2016

President Jacob Zuma apologised to South Africa in the wake of the Constitutional Court ruling over upgrades at his Nkandla homestead.

President Jacob Zuma apologised to South Africa, in an official address to the nation in the wake of the Constitutional Court ruling over upgrades at his Nkandla homestead.

Read more: President Zuma failed to uphold, defend the Constitution

Wearing a red tie and black suit, and looking somewhat nervous, Zuma began his official address by speaking about the Constitution.

"I respect role of Parliament to hold executive to account as people representative," he said.

"I welcome the ConCourt's judgment unreservedly." On Thursday, the Constitutional Court had ruled that the president should adhere to the remedial actions of the public protector and pay back tax payers funds which were used for non-security upgrades worth millions. The embattled leader said it was a groundbreaking judgement with regard to the powers of the Public Protector, adding that it was not his intention not to comply with her remedial action or disrespect her or the office. "I have consistently stated I will pay an amount towards the non-secure upgrades at Nkandla."

In spite of speculation he would step down, Zuma did not offer his resignation, instead settling for an apology for the "non-secure" upgrades to his Nkandla home.

He insisted he did not act dishonestly. "The intention was not in pursuit of corrupt ends or to unduly benefit."

The president stressed there were "lessons to be learned here for all in government".

Read more: This is what it’s like to have lunch at Nkandla

"Government is improving procurement measures to prevent [such mistakes] in future."

"The matter has caused a lot of frustration and confusion. I apologise on my behalf and that of government."

With that, he walked away from the podium. The ANC is expected to hold a press briefing at 20:00. Read more: If Zuma goes: who will lead the ANC? The court further ruled that Zuma and the National Assembly had violated the Constitution by ignoring the public protector's report.


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