After an M&G report, the public protector has been asked to probe claims that Jacob Zuma abused his power for an investment in his nephew’s company.
The Democratic Alliance (DA) on Monday called on public protector Thuli Madonsela to investigate President Jacob Zuma’s alleged abuse of power to enrich his nephew.
“A letter has been lodged with the public protector and we hope she will act on it as speedily as possible,” DA member James Lorimer said on Monday. The party wants to know if Zuma ignored the conflict of interest and abused his power to improperly secure private business deals for his nephew Khulubuse Zuma.
On Friday, the Mail & Guardian reported that Zuma allegedly helped clinch a $2-million (R13-million then) investment for his nephew’s controversial mining company, Aurora Empowerment Systems.
According to the M&G, the claim by a director of international investment firm Global Emerging Markets (Gem) suggests that Zuma involved himself personally – despite having a clear conflict of interest given that his nephew was a director of Aurora.
The Gem director’s claim is buttressed by circumstantial evidence.
To make matters worse, Gem was led to pay the money into what appears to be a dummy account from which, according to a high court claim it filed, the cash was diverted.
There is no evidence the president or Khulubuse were involved in the claimed misappropriation.
‘Abuse state power’
The presidency declined to comment on the report.
“President Zuma continues to abuse state power for his own enrichment and that of his family,” said Lorimer. “At a time when South Africa needs clean governance to facilitate economic growth, President Zuma, with his growing list of scandals, is not fit to hold office for another term.”
The DA wants Madonsela to investigate if Zuma violated the Executive Ethics Act by using his position to enrich himself or improperly benefit another person, and acting in a way that may compromise the credibility or integrity of his office. – Sapa, additional reporting by Sally Evans and Sam Sole.