A decision on whether to grant or dismiss President Jacob Zuma’s request to stop the release of Public Protector’s “state capture” report, will be handed down at the Pretoria High Court on Tuesday.
President Zuma has defended his decision for the application, saying he needs more time to respond to the questions from the Public Protector and an opportunity to interview witnesses who have made damning allegations against him.
The report by former Public Protector Advocate Thuli Madonsela into alleged “state capture” was put under lock and key pending a court ruling.
It’s alleged that the report has made adverse finding against President Zuma, some cabinet ministers and the wealthy Gupta family which has been been accused of having undue influence over the President.
The Guptas have been accused of undue influence in the appointment of cabinet ministers, board members and executives of state owned enterprises. They’ve also been accused of using their association with President Zuma to secure multi-billion rand state contracts.
Constitutional Law expert, Pierre de Vos says, ‘Well its significant because the court is going to decide whether the state capture report must be made public or remain a secret. If there is information that implicates the President it will have devastating political consequences for the President.”
Fielding questions at the National Council of Provinces in Cape Town last week, President Zuma said he was within his rights to stop the release of the state capture report.
The DA has launched a bid to oppose President Zuma’s bid. DA leader Mmusi Maimane says: “The case to oppose an interdict is to ask that we want the state capture report because the former Public Protector said the the report was final.”
Newly appointed Public Protector Advocate Busisiwe Mkhwebana says she will not oppose the court action by opposition parties to have the “state capture” report released.[Source: SABC]