‘Nxesi can’t be held accountable for improper Nkandla docs’

Treasury said in docs given to the ConCourt, it couldn’t easily work out the costs of non-security upgrades.

Public Works Minister Thulas Nxesi. Picture: EWN

JOHANNESBURG - The Public Works Ministry says its minister, Thulas Nxesi, can't be held responsible for its failure to give the proper Nkandla documentation to the National Treasury, because the documents were not properly kept before he became minister.

Earlier this week, Treasury said in documents delivered to the Constitutional Court that it could not easily work out the costs of building the non-security facilities at Nkandla, because it did not receive all the necessary documents from the Department of Public Works.

The judges are now going through the documents before they decide if President Zuma should repay the R7,8 million the Treasury says he owes government.

In the paper its submitted to judges, Treasury says the electronic and hard copies of the drawings relating to the site did not include the final as built drawings, and the information didn't include structural drawings, wet surfaces or mechanical information.

They also didn't include the bill of quantities to help work out the final cost.

But the public works ministry's Philip Masilo says it's not Nxesi's fault.

"Minister will not take blame for things that were not happening under his watch. The maladministration of the Nkandla cannot be attributed to the minister [because] he came when the project had already been completed."

He says it was the responsibility of the contracts to keep the proper documents.