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EFF to take Nhleko's Nkandla report to court

EFF intends taking Jacob Zuma and his entire Cabinet to court for “collectively” breaching the Constitution.

FILE: EFF intends taking Jacob Zuma and his entire Cabinet to court for “collectively” breaching the Constitution. Picture: Xolani Koyana/EWN.

CAPE TOWN - Police Minister Nkosinathi Nhleko's Nkandla report looks set to be challenged in court as the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) will be taking legal steps against him and his Cabinet colleagues.

Last year, the Public Protector found President Jacob Zuma unduly benefited from the non-security features installed at his private Nkandla homestead in KwaZulu-Natal.

Thuli Madonsela said the minister in conjunction with National Treasury should determine how much Zuma is liable for.

Instead, Nhleko assessed all of the features, including a swimming pool and amphitheatre and concluded they're all there for the president's security so he doesn't have to pay a cent.

Opposition parties rejected Nhleko's report.

The Democratic Alliance (DA) labelled it a cover up while the EFF is calling it propaganda.

Both parties have consulted with lawyers.

The EFF is first off the starting block in announcing it will be taking legal action.

The party, known for its refrain, "pay back the money," said it intends taking Zuma and his entire Cabinet to court for "collectively" breaching the Constitution.

The EFF's Dali Mpofu said, "That is what we will be looking for in court, to set aside and reject the report."

The party is accusing Zuma and his Cabinet of conspiring to review, contradict and reverse the Public Protector's findings.

Last year, the Western Cape High Court ruled the Public Protector's findings were not binding and enforceable.

But the court added that when an organ of state rejects those findings or remedial action, the decision to do so must not be irrational.

REACTION

Opposition parties will this week ask Parliament not to table the police minister's report, with it being labelled as a 'whitewash'.

The DA said it has sent a letter to the National Assembly speaker while the Congress of the People (Cope) said it would be approaching the courts this week.

The DA's Mmusi Maimane said, "It's deemed unconstitutional, it's irrational and without fail, it's biased. It was written by somebody who works for the Presidency as a member of the executive, therefore we've asked them not to consider it."

Political analyst Somadoda Fikeni said it will be equally important for the Public Protector to challenge the report, in determining the future of her office.

"Some Members of Parliament, particularly the ruling party had questioned her understanding and interpretation of the role of the Public Protector. This matter becomes a life and death."

Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu has also spoken out against Nhleko's report, saying it has humiliated South Africa and its people.

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