Johannesburg - Those who say President Jacob Zuma stole public funds to build his private Nkandla home are lying, Cosatu president Sidumo Dlamini said on Tuesday.
“Thuli Madonsela does not say Zuma stole the R246 million people are talking about,” he told Nehawu members at a Gauteng shop stewards council in Johannesburg.
“Thuli Madonsela confirms that the president was not giving instructions to anyone doing work there.”
However, the Public Protector did say that contractors colluded with government officials to inflate prices, Dlamini said.
Action needed to be taken against those who were involved, he said.
Dlamini said despite this people still blamed Zuma.
“People of South Africa pretend that Thuli Madonsela said the opposite.”
In her report titled, “Secure in Comfort”, Madonsela found that Zuma and his family unduly benefited from security upgrades to his private home in Nkandla, KwaZulu-Natal.
She recommended that Zuma pay back a percentage of the money spent on non-security upgrades.
Zuma is expected to give his reply to Madonsela's report on Wednesday, 14 days after its release.
Dlamini said he had been to Nkandla before and assured National Education Health and Allied Workers Union members that building at the homestead had begun before Zuma became president.
“When president Zuma and his family started to change what you see there, it was before he was president of the ANC,” Dlamini said.
“No, the public protector doesn't say that, she won't say that,” he said.
African National Congress Gauteng provincial executive committee member Uhuru Moiloa said there was an agenda to attack the ruling party.
“There is an agenda set by the media, owned by capital, to come down on the ANC. They 1/8are 3/8 projecting this leadership as corrupt.”
He said security upgrades to Zuma's home were a necessary investment.
“There is nothing wrong with the republic and its security forces deciding to secure the properties of the president. The president of the ANC has not used public money.”
Moiloa sought to assure Nehawu shop stewards that the ANC was still a liberation movement committed to the struggle of the working class.