Minister angered by DA's Nkandla visit

Public Works Minister Thulas Nxesi lashes out at DA after it's visit to Nkandla.

President Jacob Zuma's Nkandla homestead in KwaZulu-Natal as seen on 4 November 2012. Picture: Taurai Maduna/EWN

CAPE TOWN - Public Works Minister Thulas Nxesi lashed out at the Democratic Alliance (DA) on Tuesday for so called 'self-seeking antics' after Western Cape Premier Helen Zille's visit to the president's KwaZulu-Natal homestead.

Nkandla has been in the headlines after it emerged taxpayers will end up footing a large portion of the bill thought to be around R230 million, for the revamp of Jacob Zuma's KwaZulu-Natal homestead.

Nxesi and ANC Members of Parliament criticised the opposition leader for stirring trouble by going to Zuma's homestead on Sunday.

This was after they were urged to condemn ANC supporters who stopped Zille from carrying out an 'inspection' at Zuma's private residence, which is allegedly being upgraded at massive taxpayers' expense.

Zille on Monday said her party's intention, when it visited Nkandla, was to see what public money was being spent on.

The premier and other DA officials were stopped in their tracks when they went to inspect development in and around the presidents Nkandla homestead.

The DA's Debbie Shafer said, "What is most shameful of all is that not one leader of the ANC condemned this action, nor do they defend the DA's right to voice our concerns and conduct and oversight visit."

But Nxesi hit back and said, "They seem oblivious or unconcerned as to the possible outcome of such unwelcome and provocative intrusion."

Meanwhile, Deputy Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Marius Fransman, accused the DA of being hypocritical.

He said the party should be focusing on developments in the farming community of De Doorns in the Western Cape instead.

"We've picked up that a lot of these farmers are active participants of the DA, therefore it is very hypocritical to come and go to another province whilst in your own backyard you have this dilemma."

The opposition party has given Zuma until Wednesday to make details on the government funds spent on Nkandla public, or face legal action.

Last month, the City Press reported that R203 million had already been spent on renovations to Zuma's private residence.

It said taxpayers would be paying for 95 percent of the renovations, which will include a health care facility for the presidential family, underground bunkers and a playground.