Nkandla: Police minister must decide, says Zuma

President Jacob Zuma has told the Speaker of the National Assembly that the minister of police, Nkosinathi Nhleko, must report toCabinet on whether Zuma is liable in any way for the exorbitant expenditure on his private homestead at Nkandla.

On Thursday, Zuma tabled a response to the speaker of the National Assembly based on three investigations into the state spending on his Nkandla home. Approximately R216-million was spent on upgrading Zuma’s personal home.

The public protector Thuli Madonsela’s report, which was released in March, found that Zuma and his family unduly benefited from the expenditure, which included the construction of a swimming pool and amphitheatre, as well as upgrades to Zuma’s cattle kraal.

Zuma had 14 days to respond to Madonsela’s report. He did not, and said he would wait for the final outcome of the Special Investigating Unit’s (SIU’s) investigation before responding.

But on Thursday, Zuma responded, although the SIU has not released its report.

‘Expedite’ the review
Zuma said Nhleko should “expedite” the review of the various legislation used in the security upgrades.

As for Zuma’s personal liability, the president said, “the minister of police as the designated minister under the National Key Points Act, [is] to report to Cabinet on a determination to whether the president is liable for any contribution in respect of the security upgrades having regard to the legislation, past practices, culture and findings contained in the respective reports”.

Zuma’s other findings were to agree to a host of legislative and policy reviews, recommended by other state agencies. This was in light of the apparent legislative gaps that seemingly allowed the expenditure on Nkandla to skyrocket.

Zuma also directed the minister of public works to “urgently” report to Cabinet on a review of procurement policy. Zuma said he was “satisfied” with the progress made by the SIU in their investigation thus far.

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