Nkandla upgrades were in line with constitution: Zuma


President Jacob Zuma speaks at the City Hall in Pietermaritzburg, South Africa, November 18, 2016.

President Jacob Zuma speaks at the City Hall in Pietermaritzburg, South Africa, November 18, 2016.

KWADUKUZA - President Jacob Zuma said that the upgrades to his Nkandla private home were in line with the constitution.

In March, the Constitutional Court found that Zuma and the National Assembly violated the constitution when they failed to comply with the public protectors remedial findings.

In a stinging judgment, Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng said Zuma had failed to uphold, defend and respect the South African constitution by not complying with the public protector’s office.

However, Zuma has reiterated that he never asked for the upgrades to his Nkandla homestead, adding that they were done in line with the constitution.

He says he only paid the R7.8-million for non-security upgrades to his Nkandla home to comply with the courts and not because he had done anything wrong.

“As I was building my home, the government came and said, since you’re the president; we should help with security,” Zuma told ANC members in Stanger.

“I never asked for those things. When people saw the government there, they concluded they were the ones building my home.

“They called for an investigation. Three companies investigated. Not one came back, saying Zuma stole anything. I’ve never called anyone. I’ve never asked for anything. They told me that the constitution states that as president, I should be protected”.

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Turning his attention to public protector’s report into allegations of state capture, Zuma says the report absolves him of any wrongdoing.

“Now there’s a report from the public protector. What is she called in English?,” Zuma said in IsiZulu.

“She released a report saying, ‘There’s nothing I’ve found against Zuma. There’s nothing. But, I’m asking that he goes ahead to appoint a judge and establish a commission.’ Those who want Zuma to go, use Nkandla and the report. Why must he go? What has he done?”

The president also made it clear that he has no intention of stepping down as some, including within the ANC have demanded.