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Public Works denies seeing 'Nkandla letter'

Public Works Dept says it has never seen the so-called letter regarding upgrades in Nkandla.

The Nkandla homestead. Picture: City Press

CAPE TOWN - The Public Works Department on Sunday maintained it was not aware of a letter for presentation to President Jacob Zuma regarding the upgrade of his Nkandla home.

The letter allegedly proves Zuma was provided with details on the progress of renovations to his multimillion private residence.

Zuma's private home is being renovated at an estimated cost of over R200 million.

A task team was set up by the Public Works Department to investigate the Nkandla debacle.

Public Works Minister Thulas Nxesi revealed the results of the investigation which read that government spent R206 million on security upgrades and consultants for President Zuma's home.

He said no houses were built using public money.

There were however irregularities in the appointment of the 15 service providers and consultants who worked on the project.

The department's legal advisor Phillip Masilo said, "The first time we had about that letter was through the newspapers. The City Press indicated they were in possession of a letter they had obtained from Public Works. One has to ask where did they get the letter and we must also question the authenticity of the letter."

Masilo said they could not confirm the contents of the letter.

"We have never seen the letter. We don't know where it came from. The Minister of Public Works and myself have never set sight on that letter."

Meanwhile, the ANC and the South African Communist Party (SACP) welcomed the report saying the Nkandla issue can now be finally put to rest.

However, the Democratic Alliance and other opposition parties say the report does not address questions which were raised regarding the security upgrade.

The DA also questioned the fact that the report would not be made public.

They believe it casts a bigger shadow over what they dub 'Nkandlagate'.

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