South Africa: ANC Calls for Speedy Start to State Capture Inquiry

The African National Congress (ANC) says the commission of inquiry into state capture must start its work immediately, now that the terms of references have been released.

President Jacob Zuma's terms for the inquiry were finally published and released in the Government Gazette on Thursday.

In it, he wants the inquiry to investigate all forms of government corruption, including allegations against him, his Cabinet ministers, the Gupta family and state-owned entities.

Outgoing ANC national spokesperson Zizi Kodwa on Thursday said the commission, headed by Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo, must now get going without further delay.

"It must start calling witnesses immediately," Kodwa told News24 on Thursday.

"We view the allegations quite seriously. They have left a black spot on our government and our country."

Licence to get to the truth

Kodwa said the commission now had the licence to get to the truth "without fear or favour".

"The commission must shake trees, it must turn bins upside down, and it must fill holes to uncover the truth.

"It must leave no stone unturned, regardless of whoever it suspects is implicated."

The party also had full faith in Zondo and the commission to fulfil their mandate without influence, as set out by former public protector Thuli Madonsela.

In the nine-page document, Zuma said the commission must probe whether attempts were made to influence members of the national executive, including deputy ministers, office bearers and directors of the boards of SOEs.

It must also look at the claims made by former deputy minister of finance Mcebisi Jonas and former MP Vytjie Mentor about the Gupta family.

The commission must also probe if any member of the executive unlawfully, corruptly or improperly intervened in the closing of the Gupta banks accounts.

It has 180 days in which to carry out its work.

'Nowhere did I mention a year'

The Office of the Public Protector said it has not yet considered the full terms, but it was not necessary to comment on the process any further.

Busisiwe Mkhwebane had been previously accused of calling for the inquiry's scope to go back to apartheid-era crimes' a stance she denied last Thursday.

Her office stuck by that statement released last week, spokesperson Cleopatra Mosana told News24 on Thursday.

"There is nowhere where I indicated how far back the commission must start doing their investigation," Mkhwebane had said.

"Nowhere in my statement did I mention the year, whether 1994 or 1998 or 1652."

She said the commission will be best placed to get to the bottom of the allegations following more explosive information revealed in the #GuptaLeaks last year.

Source: News24

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