President Jacob Zuma on Wednesday told MPs he would not pay back any money spent on his Nkandla residence until a “determination” was made on the matter.
“Never have I ever thought on the date when I will pay back the money. Firstly, there is no money that I am going to be paying back without a determination by those who are authorised to do so, as recommended by the Public Protector,” he said.
Zuma was responding to a question posed by Economic Freedom Fighters MP Natasha Louw, who wanted to know if he had given thought to “targeting your machine to pay back the money”.
Zuma said her question was “premature” and ahead of the parliamentary process dealing with the matter.
“The Public Protector has not said pay back the money. The Public Protector has said… where [there is] undue benefit to the family or myself, she thinks this money might be paid back. But this should be determined by the minister of police.
“That determination has not been done. Why do you say I should pay back the money? You don’t even know how much,” he said, to loud applause from ruling party benches.
Earlier, Zuma took Freedom Front Plus Chief Whip Corne Mulder to task for making what Zuma called “serious allegations” against him. Mulder had earlier asked him why he had not come to the House to answer questions last November, which he was obliged to do in terms of Parliament’s rules.
Zuma told him: “You are making serious allegations that I did not come in November.”
The reason was that Parliament had not set a date for him to come at that time.
“There was never a date put.”
Zuma denied he was dodging any questions.
“You are saying I’m dodging Parliament. It’s not true… It’s not true,” he repeated. SAPA