Editorials 24.4.2014 07:00 am

ANC’s Nkandla committee shaky

President Jacob Zuma’s protectors have tried every trick in the book to shield him from accountability on the Nkandla spending.

The latest bid is a decision to deploy known Zuma loyalists to the parliamentary committee set up to look into his response to Public Protector Thuli Madonsela’s report on the upgrades to his private home. Among those chosen by the ANC is Buti Manamela, who is on record as telling Madonsela she was “not God” and that her investigations and findings are not the Ten Commandments.

Manamela told ANC election rally in Rustenburg last month that Madonsela had committed “serious legal mistakes in the past” and that she was “driven by the political agenda of the media and of the DA”. “The same applies to her investigations of Nkandla. This was a trial through the media, and so are many of her investigations,” Manamela ranted.

This after Madonsela’s damning report on Nkandla in which she found that Zuma and his family had benefited unduly from the upgrades. The ANC has also deployed its deputy chief whip, Doris Dlakude, to ensure its MPs toe the party line. Judging by the high number of trusted cadres serving on this committee, another whitewash is in the pipeline. The ANC has been at pains to sabotage the sitting of this committee, resorting to all sorts of delaying tactics.

The special committee, set up two weeks ago, has until Wednesday next week to consider Zuma’s response to the Public Protector and to table recommendations for debate in the National Assembly.

It has not met until now because the ANC took nearly two weeks to name its MPs for the committee – a calculated move to ensure the committee did not have enough time to conduct a thorough investigation of Zuma’s response. Judging by its composition, this committee has no credibility and does not have the moral authority to hold Zuma accountable.

Even before the committee starts with its task, the outcome is predictable.

 

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