Public protector, Thuli Madonsela is set to deliver her final report on claims of state capture which includes a probe into president Jacob Zuma’s relationship with the controversial Gupta family, before she leaves in mid October.
This is according to the Sunday Times which reported that Madonsela had written to the president to inform him of her work – which includes him potentially breaching the executive code of conduct, again.
The Sunday paper said that Madonsela’s case involves interviews of as many as 23 top officials and members of the president’s cabinet – including seven ministers, a deputy minister and a former MP.
The outgoing public protector, who delivered a damning report on Nklandla which eventually cost the president R7.8 million, has already interviewed Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan on any alleged Gupta family influence on his ministry.
Other people interviewed by Madonsela include:
- Mcebisi Jonas – deputy finance minister
- Barbara Hogan – former minister of public enterprises
- Vytjie Mentor – former ANC MP
- Nhlanhla Nene – former finance minister
- Themba Maseko – former cabinet spokesman
- Ivan Pillay – former South African Revenue Service acting head
Also on the public protector’s list are former Transport minister Ben Martins and Energy minister Tina Joemat-Pettersson.
“Partly the reason we subpoenaed them is because they shouldn’t be seen as sell-outs but as law-abiding citizens who are complying with the lawful order from an authorised institution,” Madonsela told the Sunday Times.
Madonsela has also invited Mineral Resources minister Mosebenzi Zwane, Co-operative Governance minister David van Rooyen, Home Affairs minister Malusi Gigaba and Trade and Industry minister Rob Davies, as well as Public Enterprises minister Lynne Brown to be interviewed.
This week the cabinet agreed to hand over minutes to Madonsela’s office. “She wants to go through the minutes to establish how decisions are taken, especially in relation to the appointment of board members of state-owned companies.
“She is determined to finish the investigation before her term ends on October 15. Insiders said a preliminary report could be ready a day before she leaves office,” the Sunday Times said.
Madonsela wrote to Zuma following initial complaints about state capture by the Gupta family, in March.
“There were allegations that he violated the executive ethics code by allowing non-state actors to get involved in the dismissal and appointment of ministers and to exercise undue influence on government processes for the benefit of [a private] company,” Madonsela said.
It is reported that the public protector asked the president the following:
- If he had received any gifts from the Gupta brothers;
- To explain the relationship between his own family and the Gupta family;
- If he had acted improperly in relation to Gupta-owned companies; and
- Whether he had benefited from the income his son Duduzane receives through his shares in Gupta companies.
The Times reported that Madonsela is investigating state contracts with the Guptas, mining licences and advertisements in the New Age newspaper.
Presidency spokesman Bongani Ngqulunga confirmed that Zuma had received a letter from the public protector, which was ” being processed”.
Read the full article in the 18 September 2016 edition of the Sunday Times.