Pretoria - Allegations that President Jacob Zuma used state resources to build and upgrade his private Nkandla homestead in KwaZulu-Natal are unfounded, Public Works Minister Thulas Nxesi said on Thursday.
Releasing a task team report following an investigation into allegations that the over R206 million spent on the upgrade was excessive, Nxesi said Zuma had not asked for the upgrade.
“The requirement to provide security for presidents, both sitting and retired, remains the responsibility of government. The Ministerial Handbook did not adequately address security around the head of state, deputy president and their families.”
Regarding the controversial tuck shop, among other things, Nxesi said the state was duty-bound to construct it, after relocating it.
“The tuck shop existed long before the president was inaugurated and was relocated within the three hectare land of the president.”
“Due to the security risk posed by the movement of people (customers), the tuck shop had to be relocated from within the premises and erected at the perimeter of the premises,” said Nxesi.
The task team's report would show no state funds were used to build the president’s private residence, he said. - Sapa