Ramaphosa wraps up two days of testimony at Zondo Commission

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President Cyril Ramaphosa appears on behalf of the ANC at the Zondo Commission of Inquiry.
President Cyril Ramaphosa appears on behalf of the ANC at the Zondo Commission of Inquiry.
Themba Hadebe
  • President Cyril Ramaphosa has appeared at the Zondo Commission. 
  • He appeared in his capacity as president of the ANC.  
  • Ramaphosa is expected to return to the commission in May.  

President Cyril Ramaphosa has wrapped up his two days of testimony at the Zondo Commission.

He appeared at the commission in his capacity as president of the ANC and not as the country's leader. 

Ramaphosa is expected to return to the commission in May. 

Following his testimony, he thanked Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo for giving the governing party an opportunity "to give an explanation of what had happened". 

Ramaphosa said the ANC came to the commission to assist it in forming a clearer picture of what had happened.  

He added when he returned to the commission in May, he would reflect on some of the actions taken to end state capture and "dismantle the network that made it possible".    

Ramaphosa said it was important to remember state capture undermined the integrity and capability of public institutions and profoundly damaged the effectiveness of the ANC. 

"So, it did affect us in the party."  

He told Zondo there was significant contestation on some of the matters that were before the commission. 

Ramaphosa concluded by paying tribute to "all those South Africans who played a role in unearthing corrupt activities that we now know as state capture". 

He referred to whistleblowers, saying he regretted in many instances "we have not treated them well". 

Ramaphosa paid tribute to journalists, saying they had been "patriotic" and played a key role. 

He said: 

For a sitting president to come to a commission such as this one, a commission that he has established, some people say it's unheard of. But we felt it was good to come both as president of the governing party as well as the president of the country.

"As the ANC, we support the work of this commission and affirm our total commitment to provide assistance to the commission to do this work, and with this, Mr Chairperson, that I would like to thank you."

Zondo told Ramaphosa he was not aware of a sitting president in the history of the country appearing before a commission.  

"I may be mistaken. It is very important. It is quite important that the ruling party, the majority party, has taken the attitude to tell the commission and the nation at large that they will support this commission," he said. 

"They knew that some of the things coming out of the commission will not be easy to deal with, but nevertheless concluded it was a process they should support, that the president of the party and the country to come to the commission to testify.

"I think it is important and it suggests the ruling party wants to account to the commission, saying to the commission we may have gone wrong somewhere. I think that's quite important, and as the commission, we appreciate that."

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