Extend Nkandla probe - DA

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nkandla nov 2 INLSA President Jacob Zuma's private residence in Nkandla. File Photo: Bongiwe Mchunu

Johannesburg - The DA will ask Public Protector Thuli Madonsela to investigate whether President Jacob Zuma's family improperly benefited from the upgrade to his home in Nkandla, it said on Sunday.

“I will today (Sunday) write to Thuli Madonsela and request that she extend her investigations into the upgrade of President Zuma’s home to include the possible improper benefits afforded to members of Zuma’s family using state resources,” Democratic Alliance parliamentary leader Lindiwe Mazibuko said in a statement.

The Sunday Times reported that taxpayers' money was allegedly used to pay for renovations to the homes of Zuma's two brothers.

It was alleged in the report that supplies from the electrical company Voltex were delivered to the homes of Michael and Joseph Zuma as part of the “prestige project.”

This information was reportedly submitted to the High Court in Durban in papers filed by Voltex, which was trying to recoup R545 249 it claimed it was owed by building contractor Pamela Mfeka.

She was allegedly awarded a R47,6 million contract by the department of Public Works to construct six buildings in Nkandla.

“Using public funds for the unjustifiable benefit of any individual is not only grossly unethical but is also a clear violation of the executive Ethics Act,” said Mazibuko.

She said the latest reports on Zuma's home would be presented to the Speaker of the National Assembly, Max Sisulu, “to further justify my call for an urgent Parliamentary inquiry into this matter”.

The City Press reported on Sunday that Public Works Minister Thulas Nxesi had admitted that the security upgrade of Zuma's home had gone over budget.

“It is clear in this case that people went over the budget,” Nxesi reportedly told Kaya FM host John Perlman on Thursday.

He reportedly said an internal public works investigation into the upgrade would be concluded next week, and that the findings would be made public.

Nxesi told Perlman it was “very clear” the prices charged for the upgrade were “questionable”. He blamed the building industry, and said it was “likely you will be exploited”.

He said the public had the right to be upset about the cost of the upgrade - reportedly about R250 million - but should give his department a chance to investigate.

Zuma told Parliament last month the government was paying to upgrade the security at his home, but that he had taken out a bond to pay for the rest of the upgrade. - Sapa

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