Opposition to table alternative Nkandla report in Parliament

BY CHARL BOSCH - AUGUST 17, 2015

The Democratic Alliance (DA) has indicated that it would be submitting a motion in Parliament tomorrow to have the Nkandla ad-hoc committee’s findings into the upgrades at President Jacob Zuma’s private home, replaced by an alternative report drafted by opposition parties.

Speaking at a press conference outside the National Assembly earlier today, party Chief Whip John Steenhuisen said the decision was made after the adaption of Police Minister Nathi Nhleko’s findings two months ago, which cleared Zuma of paying back a portion of the R246-million spent on security upgrades as recommended in Public Protector Thuli Madonsela’s Secure in Comfort report.

“Minister Nhleko was directed by the President to determine how much of the security upgrades at his private residence the President is financially liable for. Minister Nhleko’s report serves no other purpose but to absolve President Zuma from any and all liability, and in the process creates a conflict of interest at odds with our Constitution," Steenhuisen said.

He also added that Nhleko’s findings should never have been adopted in the first place, describing it as “poorly drafted” and “fundamentally flawed”.

Outlining the substitute report, Steenhuisen concluded that their version, versus that of Nhleko, points to a misrepresentation of mandate, unwillingness to engage with the findings of High Court Judge Ashton Schippers, inflating of costs and deliberately hiding the amount spent from Parliament by not having it appear on the Medium Term Expenditure Framework.

“Minister Nhleko’s report – effectively rubber-stamped by the ANC in the Committee – is completely at odds with due process and our Constitution, and should have been declared irrational by Parliament,” Steenhusien said.