Zuma must come clean - Mazibuko

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Copy of lindiwe mazibuko INDEPENDENT NEWSPAPERS DA parliamentary leader Lindiwe Mazibuko. File photo by Courtney Africa.

Johannesburg - President Jacob Zuma must come clean on whether he saw a letter outlining security upgrades for his private Nkandla home, DA parliamentary leader Lindiwe Mazibuko said on Monday.

“If he did see the letter, then he must further clarify why he did not take any steps to address the unnecessarily excessive expenses set out in the letter... and whether he accordingly made any enquiries as to their cost,” Mazibuko said in a statement.

“If he did not see the letter, then he must explain how it is reasonable for the head of the executive to ignore correspondence directed at him by one of his departments, and why he took no active steps to familiarise himself with the details of an upgrade to his own private residence.”

Mazibuko said she would submit a series of parliamentary questions to Zuma.

The department of public works had sent a letter to Zuma in November 2010.

On Sunday, Public Works Minister Thulas Nxesi said the government spent R206 million on security upgrades and consultants. Included in this amount was R135 million for the “operational needs” of various government departments, R71 million for consultants and security features such as bullet proof windows, security fencing, evacuation mechanisms, and firefighting equipment, he told reporters in Pretoria.

Also included in the total was R26 million to make changes to the project (variation orders).

State Security Minister Siyabonga Cwele said neither Zuma nor his family had any input on the security upgrade.

“They were not involved with the design and installation of security measures.”

Nxesi said Zuma was informed of the security upgrades, but did not know any of the details.

Mazibuko said the letter contradicted Nxesi's “concerted campaign” to prove that the report on Nkandla vindicated Zuma.

“Instead of answering key questions about President Zuma's involvement, it targets low-ranking officials in the department. It is a slap in the face of accountability and transparency,” she said on Sunday.

The Freedom Front Plus and the Christian Democratic Party questioned the amount spent on Nkandla.

FF Plus spokesman on public works Pieter Groenewald said: “It is possible to have effective security measures put in place for far less than the amount mentioned.”

Groenewald said the full report should be made public. Nxesi said it would not because the residence was a national key point.- Sapa



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