Calls for Architect & Madonsela to appear before Nkandla committee
Amanda Khoza, News24
Pietermaritzburg – Members of the Nkandla ad hoc committee on Thursday called for Public Protector Thuli Madonsela, former ministers and architect Minenhle Makhanya to appear before them.
The committee spent Thursday deliberating over its findings after visiting President Jacob Zuma’s homestead in Nkandla, northern KwaZulu-Natal on Wednesday.
Agang SA MP Andries Tlouamma said: “We need to call the principal agent, Minenhle Makhanya, because he knows a lot. The then minister of public works needs to also come and give further clarity on what happened. There are other people who played a role here.
“It is a narrow view that the president must pay back the money, we need to make sure that the president has not used his power to have this work done. We also need the public protector to come here and tell us why she called that specific area an amphitheatre.”
ANC MP Mmamoloko Kubayi said Makhanya was already appearing in the KwaZulu-Natal High Court in Pietermaritzburg accounting for Nkandla. “We do not want to compromise court action,” said Kubayi.
MP Corne Mulder from the FF Plus disagreed. He said, “This whole Nkandla thing is a mess… Former minister of public works Jeff Dodge, former deputy minister of public works Gwen Mahlambi and Minenhle Makhanya must explain what happened.
“Makhanya as the architect was the person told to take the lead on the entire project; he must explain how the amount escalated. We must call Jean Rindel, the project manager, and the public protector. She must come and explain to us how she conducted her report; we expect the same from the SIU as well.”
NFP’s Nhlanhla Khubisa said money was squandered on the homestead. “The introduction of Minenhle Makhanya by the president leaves much to be desired. By introducing him he stepped into a grey area of procurement,” said Khubisa.
ANC MP Mathole Motshega said the president had nothing to do with the upgrades. “We must deal with the people who ripped off the taxpayers and leave the president alone. I agree with the call that the minister must appear before the committee.
“There is no need to call the president because government instructed people to do something for him and then those people turned around and decided to rip off South Africans.”
ANC MP Dorris Dlakude said, “Some of us sitting here are saying that the public protector’s report is legally binding. Judge Ashton Schippers’s ruling made it clear that it is not legally binding.
"You cannot compare the president to ordinary citizens. Of course, he must be protected. We cannot expect the president to know everything that is happening.”