ANC government took time to act on state capture warnings - Mantashe
Johannesburg - ANC chairperson Gwede Mantashe says the African National Congress (ANC)-led government took its time to react to the early warnings of state capture because it was busy “theorising” it and decided to there must be a commission into state capture.
He was giving evidence at the Commission of Inquiry into State Capture last night.
After questioning by evidence-leader Advocate Alec Freund and Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo, Mantashe said there was no need to have a Parliamentary Committee overseeing the president as a sitting president had no portfolio and answered to parliament as a collective.
Freund put it to Mantashe that there were no adequate institutionalism mechanisms dealing with concerns such as undue pressure on the president regarding cabinet appointments.
But Mantashe said that a portfolio committee dedicated to the presidency “would only work for two hours”.
Zondo said that mechanisms always need to be in place to ensure that every member of the government, including the president, was held accountable.
Before Mantashe’s appearance, the Commission received an affidavit by a member of the ANC’s Integrity Commission confirming it called former President Jacob Zuma was summoned to appear before them in 2016.
Zuma allegedly requested that no minutes be taken of the meeting and it not be recorded.
At the meeting, the Integrity Commission told Zuma why they believed he should step down and after two hours of Zuma replying, the Commission did not change its mind, the affidavit said.
At his last appearance, Mantashe said that the ANC Integrity Commission recommended Zuma step down in 2013 and it was since then that the ANC suffered instability.
Earlier, Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo said it was really concerning if anybody was trying to intimidate the commission from doing its job. He was commenting after the Commission's Parktown offices were broken into over the weekend. A laptop and desktop computer was stolen.
Zondo also confirmed that during the week he got the report that there was a bullet that was found in one of the offices.
"They must know that the commission will not be intimidated," he said.
Zondo said the Commission's officials sacrificed lots of their time to do the work of the Commission and that they were dedicated to their work.
"We are determined to do what we are required to do up to the end of time," Zondo said.
Criminal cases for both incidents have been opened at the Hillbrow Police Station, spokesperson for the Commission Mbuyiselo Stemela confirmed.