State Capture Report: I will step aside where I’m conflicted, says Cyril Ramaphosa
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Pretoria - President Cyril Ramaphosa has indicated that he will not hesitate to step aside if he is implicated by the State Capture Report.
Fielding questions from the media at the Union Buildings on Tuesday, shortly after State Capture Commission chairperson Acting Chief Justice Raymond Zondo handed him the first draft of the report, Ramaphosa said: “I don’t know what the report will be saying about a whole variety of people including myself. So one has to read the report first to be able to see whether one is conflicted or not.”
He added: “Where I’m conflicted, I have a sense of integrity to be able to step out of the way. To say... I am conflicted in this. (It’s) ingrained in the way I do things all the time so that fingers should never be pointed at one favouring oneself when you are conflicted.”
The State Capture Report is set to be released in three parts, with the first volume focusing on the acts of corruption and maladministration that gripped state-owned entities such as SAA and companies associated with it, while volume two is set to deal with the Gupta-owned and now-defunct media company The New Age, among other entities.
According to Ramaphosa, analysing the report will be a lengthy process.
“Going through the report for us is going to be quite an involved process. We are going to make sure that various departments in government are able to analyse the report, look very closely at what is recommended. Of course, there will be areas where action will be taken (such as) infighting in government, silo approach to work ...”
While it has taken four years for the commission to complete its work, Ramaphosa said that despite having to wait to receive two other parts of the report, his work in sifting through the report will resume as quickly as possible.
“We don’t have long to wait. We have waited for four years. All that we are now asking is to have patience until June, when we will come out precisely on how we are going to come out in implementing the recommendations,” he said.
Justice Zondo, meanwhile, declined to comment when asked whether there would be prosecutions on the evidence found.
“I’m going to disappoint you. I decided that I would not deal with the contents of the report here. You will see what findings are there. You will see everything. Nothing will be held back. For today’s proceedings, I won’t deal with the contents of the events.”
The first draft of the report will be placed on the Presidency website by Tuesday evening.