Just because Guptas ‘spoke’ to ministers doesn’t mean it was state capture‚ says Zuma

Former president Jacob Zuma during his welcome home prayer in Nkandla, KwaZulu-Natal on Thursday 31 May 2018.
Former president Jacob Zuma during his welcome home prayer in Nkandla, KwaZulu-Natal on Thursday 31 May 2018.
Image: THULI DLAMINI

Former president Jacob Zuma says the judicial commission of inquiry into state capture is being unfairly used to target certain people.

Speaking during a homecoming prayer organised by KwaZulu-Natal religious leaders in Nkandla on Thursday‚ Zuma said he has a problem with the term "state capture" – saying the phrase wasn’t being used correctly.

"If you say there is a state‚ which is the government‚ it means it has three pillars: parliament‚ the judiciary and executive. If you tell the world that in South Africa there is a state capture‚ it means that you say all these three pillars have been captured. This is used to denigrate other people‚" he said.

Zuma said people were accused of state capture for merely speaking to a certain family - a reference to the Guptas‚ who are accused of looting the state.

"What I have heard is that they say there is a family that was speaking to a few people or ministers or anyone. You can't say [that] because you have spoken to those people you are then in state capture‚" said Zuma.

The former president also addressed comments from a pro-Zuma group that it was considering a new political party with him at the helm – with the aim of taking on the ANC in next year’s election. The group‚ Mazibuyele Emasisweni‚ said they were in consultation with other members nationally to ensure that the party became a reality.

But Zuma rubbished this‚ saying that those who thought he would leave the ANC and start a new political party "don't know me very well”.

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