State capture inquiry: DA demands that Zuma release terms of reference

President Jacob Zuma.
President Jacob Zuma.
Image: REUTERS/Rogan Ward

The Democratic Alliance (DA) has written to President Jacob Zuma to demand that he release the terms of reference for the judicial commission of inquiry into state capture.

It has been more than a week since Zuma announced the establishment of the commission‚ as required by a Constitutional Court judgment.

Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng has appointed Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo to head the inquiry‚ which was ordered by former public protector Thuli Madonsela in her report on state capture.

"Clearly defining the terms of reference will be in the best interests of all South Africans and must be done urgently so that we can address ongoing state capture once and for all‚ and hold those responsible to account. The country has a right to know what specifically will be probed – Zuma can no longer hide‚" DA federal executive chairman James Selfe said on Thursday in a media statement.

"The commission must get to work urgently and probe the serious allegations of state capture lodged against President Zuma‚ his son Duduzane‚ and the controversial Gupta brothers. The ongoing discussion about the terms of reference for the inquiry and Zuma's repeated attempts to have the report reviewed have been nothing but delaying tactics. The reality is that the terms of reference are already established by the report‚ which must now simply be implemented‚" Selfe said.

In its letter to Zuma‚ the DA pointed out that any attempt to water down the scope of the commission would be unlawful and would undermine the powers of the public protector as set out in the constitution.

Selfe noted that the establishment of the judicial commission was astoundingly long overdue.

"If the president had respected the constitutional mandate of the public protector‚ the report on the findings of the judicial inquiry should have been finalised by June last year‚ a full seven months ago‚" Selfe said.

"The allegations of state capture have already undermined the public's faith in the state. And‚ as the president himself noted‚ any further delays in establishing the commission‚ will make the public doubt government's determination to dismantle all forms of corruption."

Newly elected president of the African National Congress Cyril Ramaphosa has stated that he believed the terms of reference should conform to what is already set out in Madonsela's report.

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