Johannesburg - The DA on Wednesday condemned Higher Education Minister Blade Nzimande's comments that articles about Nkandla are “white people's lies”, saying it was a poor attempt to cover up the rot.
“This not only undermines a chapter nine institution - which is unconstitutional - but it also is a smack in the face of accountability and good governance,” Democratic Alliance spokesman Wilmot James said in a statement.
“This latest attack is part of a multi-pronged strategy by President (Jacob) Zuma’s inner circle to do everything possible to prevent him from facing the music for the Nkandla scandal.”
According to the SABC, Nzimande said the reports were “lies perpetuated by white people”.
Nzimande, speaking at the University of Zululand, reportedly praised Zuma and said it was appropriate to honour him for his contribution to peace in KwaZulu-Natal and education in the country.
In her report, titled “Secure in Comfort”, Public Protector Thuli Madonsela found that Zuma and his family improperly benefited from the R246 million security upgrades to his private Nkandla homestead in KwaZulu-Natal.
These included a swimming pool, a cattle kraal, and an amphitheatre.
Madonsela also found that Zuma breached the Executive Members' Ethics Act. She recommended that a percentage of the money be repaid.
James said Nzimande needed to spend more time talking about what needed to be done to provide better higher education if he wanted to contribute to the public discourse in the country.
“Of course this will not happen because the ANC under President Jacob Zuma puts Jacob Zuma first and the people second,” he said.