Zuma discusses Nkandla upgrades

President Jacob Zuma has maintained that his family is helping foot the bill for the renovations in Nkandla.

CAPE TOWN - President Jacob Zuma on Thursday spoke at length about the controversial upgrade to his Nkandla in Parliament.

He told Members of Parliament (MPs) his family is picking up the bill for some of the upgrades to his KwaZulu-Natal homestead.

The president added taxpayers are not footing the bill for much of the contentious refurbishments.

Zuma stared off his address by reading a prepared statement in which he made the revelations.

“I’ve never asked government to build a home for me.”

He then went on to expand on the matter.

Turning his head towards the opposition benches, he said, “Let me help this house, even the honourable members who have been visiting my home.”

Zuma was referring to the Democratic Alliance (DA)’s recent visit to Nkandla.

But the DA Parliamentary Leader Lindiwe Mazibuko would not let the matter to rest.

“Government is spending R250 million to upgrade, not a presidential house, but the president’s own [personal] house.”

Zuma said the speculation around the issue has been unfair.

Meanwhile, Public Works Minister Thulas Nxesi on Wednesday said if they discover any irregularities in the Nkandla project, he will deal with it accordingly.

The ministry insisted that the president will not get any preferential treatment.

(Edited by Lindiwe Mlandu)