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State capture in South Africa: time to think differently about redress and recovering the stolen loot

State capture in South Africa: time to think differently about redress and recovering the stolen loot

SOUTH Africans are plunged into darkness daily by rolling power cuts. These are a stark reminder of the destruction that years of state capture wreaked on Eskom, the state-owned power utility. Eskom’s inability to meet the energy needs of citizens and the economy is now the undeniable example of how state capture made parastatals and other state institutions ineffective. The country urgently needs action to recover the stolen funds and fix the economy. So far, President Cyril Ramaphosa has offered only a few general targets, and outcomes have been dissatisfying. For example, the “total of R2.9 billion” that he said…
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Interpol red notice: what it means and why South Africa requested it

Interpol red notice: what it means and why South Africa requested it

THE International Criminal Police Organisation (Interpol) has issued a red notice for two members of the wealthy but now disgraced Gupta family, Atul and Rajesh Gupta. This could now pave way for their arrest and extradition from the United Arab Emirates to face fraud and money laundering charges in South Africa. The Guptas – who at their height owned a business empire spanning computer equipment, media, and mining – are close friends of former President Jacob Zuma. A judicial commission of inquiry into state capture recently found that, with Zuma’s help, they orchestrated massive corruption. Thabo Leshilo asked Bernadine Benson…
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Businessman nabbed in first arrest in probe into state capture

Businessman nabbed in first arrest in probe into state capture

AFRICAN MIRROR REPORTER BARELY 24 hours after he disclosed that he had donated millions to the ANC from profits made from a questionable R255-million, the man suspected to be kingpin in what has come to be known as the “asbestos scandal” has been arrested. Edwin Sodi, the CEO of Blackhead Engineering, was among five individuals arrested by the Hawks, South Africa’s elite investigation unit, in connection with suspected fraud and corruption around the project. Hawks spokesperson Hangwani Mulaudzi said the suspects are scheduled to appear in Bloemfontein on Friday." Sodi told the Zondo Commission, investigating fraud, corruption and capture of…
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Commission probing state capture adopts hardline stance against ex-president Zuma

Commission probing state capture adopts hardline stance against ex-president Zuma

AFRICAN MIRROR REPORTER A special judicial commission set up to investigate allegations of fraud, corruption and the capture of the state by corrupt individuals, civil servants and politicians is taking steps to force former South African President Jacob Zuma to appear before it. Deputy Judge President Raymond Zondo, head of the Zondo Commission of Inquiry, disclosed today, the day that Zuma was scheduled to appear, that he will hear an application from the commission's legal team to issue summonses against Zuma. This comes after Zuma wrote to the commission and said he would not be able to appear because of…
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Zuma’s attack on a judge is without merit, but it’s dangerous for South Africa

Zuma’s attack on a judge is without merit, but it’s dangerous for South Africa

CATHLEEN POWELL, Associate Professor in Public Law, University of Cape Town “POST-TRUTH” culture is exemplified by the constant negation of fact-finding, expertise and research. Within such a culture, speakers, whether they occupy positions of power or are commenting anonymously on social media, become increasingly comfortable with claiming that reality is whatever they say it is. This, without any need to offer evidence which can be evaluated against objective criteria through reasoned argument. Former South African president Jacob Zuma adopted this approach when he recently demanded that Deputy Chief Justice Ray Zondo, the head of the state capture inquiry investigating grand…
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South African judge has refused to step down from corruption probe: this was the right call

South African judge has refused to step down from corruption probe: this was the right call

DEPUTY Chief Justice Raymond Zondo, the head of the inquiry into allegations that the South African state was “captured” and repurposed to benefit private interests during former president Jacob Zuma’s tenure (May 2009 to February 2018), has dismissed Zuma’s application for his recusal. The former president, who stands accused of having facilitated grand corruption, had accused the judge of bias. Politics editor Thabo Leshilo asked Cathleen Powell for her insights. CATHLEEN POWELL, Associate Professor in Public Law, University of Cape Town Is the decision correct or not and why? The decision is correct, and it is the only principled decision…
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Zuma walks out on commission, after dismissal of recusal application

Zuma walks out on commission, after dismissal of recusal application

AFRICAN MIRROR REPORTER Deputy Judge President Raymon Zondo MINUTES after his application for the recusal of the chairman of the state capture commission was dismissed, former President Jacob Zuma took off without the permission of Deputy Judge President Raymond Zondo. Zondo expressed his dismay. ‘This is a “serious matter” Zondo says. “It is a pity that he has elected to leave without asking for permission.” The Deputy President said the commission would adjourn to reflect on Zuma’s actions. By excusing himself from the commission without permission, Zuma could find himself charged with contempt of the commission, which has the same…
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Call for South African President to testify on role in state capture

Call for South African President to testify on role in state capture

AFRICAN MIRROR REPORTER ADVOCATE Vuyani Ngalwana, one of South Africa leading legal minds and an acting-judge in the high court, has called for South African President Cyril Ramaphosa to be called to testify before the Zondo Commission about his role, when he was deputy president, in state capture. Ngalwana has written to the chairperson of the Commission, Deputy Judge President to make a case why Ramaphosa should be invited to testify. He has also called for Kgalema Motlanthe, a former deputy president to Zuma, to also be asked some questions at the commission. The acting-judge also expressed a view that…
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Whistleblowers are key to fighting corruption in South Africa. It shouldn’t be at their peril

Whistleblowers are key to fighting corruption in South Africa. It shouldn’t be at their peril

NUMEROUS corruption scandals have been reported in South Africa in recent times. The extent of corruption in the country has been laid bare at the judicial commission probing allegations of state capture over the past three years. Corruption can impede a country’s economic growth, and undermine democratic principles, stability and trust. MONRAY MARSELLUS BOTHA, Head of Department & Associate Professor, University of Pretoria Whistle-blowing is one of the mechanisms used to deter corruption. It plays a role in encouraging accountability, transparency and high standards of governance in both the private sector and public institutions. Whistleblowers help combat criminal conduct and…
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South Africa’s ex-leader Zuma ordered to reappear at graft inquiry

South Africa’s ex-leader Zuma ordered to reappear at graft inquiry

SOUTH Africa's former President Jacob Zuma has been ordered to reappear at an inquiry into state corruption during his term after he abruptly left the proceedings last month, according to a summons issued by the head of the investigation. Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo is also asking the Constitutional Court, the highest legal authority in the land, to compel Zuma to attend and "account for his exercise of public power". In his second appearance at the Commission of Inquiry into State Capture two weeks ago, Zuma had his application for the judge to recuse himself dismissed. Zuma then left proceedings…
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