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Nkandla committee: MPs concerned about time

The ad-hoc committee held its first sitting in Parliament on Thursday morning.

A 2010 aerial view of Nkandla. Picture: Google Earth.

CAPE TOWN - Opposition Members of Parliament (MPs) on the Nkandla ad-hoc committee on Thursday raised concerns that not enough time has been set aside for them to complete their work.

The committee is considering President Jacob Zuma's response to Public Protector Thuli Madonsela's report on R246 million upgrades to the president's private KwaZulu-Natal homestead.

The protector's report, which was released on 19 March, found Zuma improperly benefitted from the multi-million rand security upgrades.

She recommended the president pay back part of the cost for non-security upgrades, including a swimming pool and a chicken run.

Madonsela also called on Zuma to reprimand ministers involved in the project.

A 2010 aerial view of Nkandla taken off Google Earth.

The latest aerial view of Nkandla taken in August 2013 which was taken by an aerial mapping company using a hi-tech, high-altitude mapping aircraft.

The committee, which was established by National Assembly Speaker Max Sisulu, held its first meeting in Parliament on Thursday morning.

MPs have until the end of the month to complete their task.

Committee chairperson Cedric Frolick says the clock is ticking.

"If we want to do a thorough job, as Parliament should do, then we must be meticulous in what we are trying to achieve before 7 May."

RAMPANT CORRUPTION ANGERS TUTU

Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu says while there are aspects to celebrate in the country's fledgling democracy, blatant corruption is eroding progress.

He held a briefing at St George's Cathedral in Cape Town last night where he spoke about the country's gains and losses over the past two decades.

"We have what is considered one of the best constitutions in the world."

Tutu praised the country's comprehensive HIV/Aids plan, increased water and electricity provision to the poor, but became angry when detailing the effects of rampant corruption.

Although he attempted to steer clear of politics, he did say he would not be voting for the ruling party.

"It shouldn't happen, it's unconscionable," he said.

At rimes gesticulating, the archbishop emphasised how important it is for South Africans to think carefully before casting their ballots.