Zuma Declares Luxury Village
Andre Koopman, Charles Phahlane
Cape Town - Deputy President Jacob Zuma has for the first time declared his luxury village at Nkandla in KwaZulu-Natal in this year's register of members' interests.
The embattled Zuma has come under fire for allegedly failing to declare his properties, interests and gifts received, including the R1.3 million 12-unit village, and parliament's ethics committee yesterday started probing the affair.
MPs are required to declare in the register gifts and benefits that exceed R350.
In the register under land and property, Zuma notes the property as "Land and Dwellings under a permission to occupy" at Nhlola area, Nxamalala Tribal Authority, Nkandla.
In a previous register under the land and property section, Zuma referred queries to the executive register of interests.
The charge sheet against Zuma's financial adviser Schabir Shaik claims that money for the Nkandla development was allegedly channelled from arms company Thales through accounts run by Shaik to another account held by prominent Durban businessman Vathasallum "Vivian" Reddy.
Among gifts received, Zuma notes in the register a "birthday party" sponsored by Erwin Ulbricht, but there is no men- tion of any gifts or donations from Shaik.
The charge sheet against Shaik states that he and his company allegedly gave gifts or donations or payments to Zuma to the order of R1.2 million.
These include car payments, school fees, clothing bills, travel and rent. The state alleges that Shaik took elaborate steps to hide the origin of most of the payments.
Parliament's ethics committee is investigating whether Zuma did indeed receive gifts and benefits which he did not note in the register.
Committee chairman Luwellyn Landers refused to comment on yesterday's meeting of the committee.
In another development, Democratic Alliance chief whip Douglas Gibson yesterday lodged a complaint about Zuma with the Public Protector Lawrence Mushwana.
Gibson has asked Mushwana to investigate whether Zuma had contravened the Executive Ethics code by allegedly failing to declare gifts and benefits received from Shaik.
With acknowledgements to Andre Koopman, Charles Phahlane and the Daily News.