Zondo wants 10 more months to complete investigations into Prasa missing millions
Johannesburg - Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo wants to complete investigations into missing billions at Prasa as well wrap up his probe on the rampant fraud and corruption said to be allegedly rife in the Free State government before compiling a final report on State Capture.
This was revealed when Zondo lodged an urgent application at the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria on Tuesday for the Commission to be granted a futher extension of 10 months so as to allow him to complete his job.
In the matter heard by Judge Wendy Hughes, counsel advocate Paul Kennedy told the court that his client, Zondo, has yet to hear the second round of hearings involving SAA, SABC, SA Express, Transnet and Denel.
The application was made as the term of the Commission is due to end by the end of this month (February).
In the 68-page application, Zondo lists the achievements by the Commission to date and this includes a number of interviews held with those implicated in state capture such as former president Jacob Zuma, his son Duduzane and former GCIS head Mzwanele Manyi.
He also confirms that the Commission has to date heard the evidence of various witnesses who have implicated several high profile people in acts of graft at various state-owned entities.
“In addition to the hearing of (second round of) evidence under Phase 2, there is still Prasa in relation to which no evidence at all has been led. The Commission still needs to hear all evidence relating to allegations of corruption, fraud and other irregularities at Prasa," Zondo says in his papers.
He adds: “No less than 10 witnesses will be heard in relation to Prasa. That is leaving out time that may be required for cross-examination should I grant some of the implicated people leave to cross-examine witnesses who implicate them."
Zondo further says he is expecting to hear evidence of 15 witnesses related to acts of corruption, fraud, improper conduct and irregularities in government projects and tenders in the Free State Province - including government departments and that his Commission would further need to investigate claims that Parliament failed to perform its oversight obligations to stop fraud and corruption within its ranks.
“The idea is that, should the Commission conclude at the end of its work that there was State Capture, it can then determine whether any failure of Parliament to properly perform its oversight obligations played any role in State Capture and in allowing the levels of corruption and fraud in our country to reach the levels that it has reached,” Zondo says the papers.
Judgement has been reserved.