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Mcebisi Jonas set to give testimony as state capture inquiry resumes

Jonas is expected to implicate former President Jacob Zuma and his son and when he tells the commission about the ministerial position Zuma’s friends, the Guptas, offered him.

FILE: Former deputy Finance Minister Mcebisi Jonas. Picture: Kayleen Morgan/EWN

JOHANNESBURG – The State Capture Commission of Inquiry is expected to resume on Friday morning with its second witness, former Finance Minister Mcebisi Jonas.

Jonas is expected to implicate former President Jacob Zuma and his son and when he tells the commission about the ministerial position Zuma’s friends, the Guptas, offered him.

Jonas made a public statement in March 2016 that blew the whistle on the alleged influence of the Gupta family on the state.

Since then, a lot has happened. More revelations of this alleged state capture came to the fore with criminal charges being laid against the family, banks closing their accounts and many of the family members leaving the country.

Jonas will tell the commission today why he is convinced the Gupta family had unfiltered control over the state.

He is expected to implicate Zuma and his son.

The former president’s lawyers will have to apply to cross-examine Jonas.

ZUMA MUST FACE ZONDO INQUIRY

The Democratic Alliance (DA) said Zuma should not be allowed to dodge the Zondo Commission of Inquiry into state capture.

Zuma’s legal team has asked the commission for more time to decide how he will participate in the inquiry.

The opposition said that the African National Congress (ANC) too must be called to testify because it allowed state capture to effectively collapse the state.

The DA says that with the exception of the Public Enterprises Committee, Parliament has been stonewalling the process to hold people implicated in state capture to account, including the former president’s son, Duduzane Zuma.

DA chief whip John Steenhuisen said: “That was a political decision that was made. Because if you look at some of the subpoenas that have been issued, there doesn’t seem to be a reluctance to issue subpoenas, but it’s determined on who the person is.”

He said while the Zondo inquiry is underway, criminal charges laid against key protagonists in state capture must continue to be investigated.

“Whether those people are going to appear before the commission or what its outcome is going to be, is neither here nor there.”

The DA said it will still be pursuing legal options to be allowed to cross-examine witnesses at the Zondo inquiry, something Judge Raymond Zondo has already said he won’t allow.

Additional reporting by Lindsay Dentlinger.