Outgoing Public Protector Thuli Madonsela has expressed disappointment with President Zuma’s dramatic rowback on the ongoing state capture probe.
Madonsela made this known after President Zuma took a different path on the verge of his interrogation with the office of the Public Protector.
According to reports, Zuma objected to answering questions posed to him on the allegation; insisting that he must see Madonsela’s previous evidence on the matter.
In addition, the President also demanded that he or his legal representative must be allowed to question the witnesses who were earlier interrogated by the Public Protector.
“President Jacob Zuma has written to the Public Protector, Advocate Thuli Madonsela requesting her to allow him or his legal representative to question other witnesses, determined by the Public Protector; who have appeared before [her],” the Presidency said in a statement on Monday.
BuzzSouthAfrica learned that the request to question witnesses was first proposed by Zuma’s legal representative on October 6th, after he had asked Madonsela to allow the incoming Public Protector to complete the state capture investigation.
Outgoing Public Protector Thuli Madonsela Urges Zuma To Cooperate
Reacting to the request, the Public Protector pleaded with the President to cooperate by submitting answers to questions on the investigation. It is understood that President Zuma was on Saturday, October 01, 2016, given all copies of evidence implicating him.
Madonsela also appealed to the President to assist with any information he has that can assist the investigation, primarily, by answering the questions put to him.
Contradicting Zuma’s claim that he was not informed about the interrogation on time, the Public Protector disclosed that Zuma was afforded a proper opportunity to tender his evidence since March 22, 2016.
Zuma had argued that Madonsela’s “short notice did not take into account the provisions of Section 7(9) of the Public Protector Act which states that the implicated person (the president in this case) or his legal representative is entitled to question other witnesses, determined by the Public Protector, who have appeared before Public Protector.”
But the Outgoing Public Protector Thuli Madonsela insisted that Zuma will not be allowed to speak with other witnesses or have access to evidence gathered in the course of the investigation.