Frolick appointed as Nkandla ad-hoc chair
Cedric Frolick has assured the committee’s members that all relevant reports on Nkandla will be considered.
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CAPE TOWN - Parliament's ad-hoc committee on Nkandla has elected a chairperson and is set to meet again next week to hammer out its programme.
Senior African National Congress (ANC) Member of Parliament, Cedric Frolick was elected as the committee's chair on Tuesday, after opposition MPs didn't put forward a candidate.
The start of the committee's work stalled last month when opposition Parliamentarians refused to elect a chair, insisting they first wanted its mandate clearly spelt out.
But his election went ahead after opposition MPs were assured that all relevant Nkandla reports, including that of the Public Protector, will be dealt with.
"I hope we are in agreement in as far as that is concerned so that we can proceed in looking at the logistics and come back to the next meeting prepared now with all the relevant documents to consider a draft programme."
Frolick has assured the committee's members that all relevant reports related to the almost quarter of a billion rand spent on President Jacob Zuma's private home will be considered.
The next battle's likely to be over whether or not President Zuma will be called to appear before the committee, which has the power to subpoena people who disobey a request to come and answer questions.
But ANC MPs argued that it was premature to talk about subpoenas.
It will have before it Public Protector Thuli Madonsela's report, which found that Zuma breached the executive code of ethics and recommended he repay some of the nearly R250 million spent.
The committee will also have the report by the government's task team, which exonerated Zuma, the Special Investigating Unit (SIU)'s provisional report and Zuma's response to Parliament submitted last month.
Frolick on Tuesday said at the next meeting of the committee, on a date yet to be set, it will work out its programme.
The multi-party committee has 11 members, six from the ANC, two from the Democratic Alliance, one from the Economic Freedom Fighters and two representing the other parties.
The committee has to report back to Parliament by 24 October.
SIU MISSES DEADLINE
Lawyers for Nkandla architect Minenhle Makhanya say the SIU has failed to meet a deadline to hand over documents that could show who ordered the extensive upgrades to Zuma's home.
The SIU has started legal action against Makhanya claiming he must pay R155 million of the money spent on Zuma's property.
The Public Protector found that Zuma benefitted improperly from the upgrades and asked him to repay a reasonable portion of the money.
Makhanya's lawyer Barnabus Xulu says this case can't continue unless he gets these documents.
"Our client would have to base his defense based on these documents. Now in the absence of these documents our client is unable to state his defense or to plead and they are all relevant."