State Capture: Chief Justice Zondo Hands Final Report To President Ramaphosa

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Chief Justice Raymond Zondo on Wednesday handed to President Cyril Ramaphosa the final report of the Judicial Commission of Inquiry into Allegations of State Capture, Corruption, and Fraud in the Public Sector including Organs of State.

Justice Zondo apologised for the more than two-and-a-half-hour delay in the handover ceremony.

It has been four and half years since the commission was appointed. The inquiry itself ran for about three and half years.

“The report that we are handing over to the President is in two parts … part five and part six,” explained Chief Justice Zondo.

He said the report included the SABC, State Security Agency, Vrede Dairy Project, Parliamentary oversight, Illicit money flows of proceeds of state capture, the Waterkloof Airbase landing of the Gupta plane, and evidence relating to the ANC.

Ramaphosa said: “State capture was an assault on our democracy and violated the rights of every man, woman and child in this country.

“Through the various reports released by the Commission, we have come to understand what happened, who was involved, and what effect state capture has had on our state, our economy and our society.”

He said the formal handover represents the fulfillment of the remedial action recommended six years ago by then public protector, Thuli Mandonsela.

The President said SA owed a debt of gratitude to Chief Justice Zondo and his team.

“My heart goes out to you and your family … we had to take certain actions because they were difficulties,” said Ramaphosa without giving details.

The President also thanked members of the commission, witnesses, media, and ordinary South Africans who supported the work of the commission.

“The report is far more than a record of widespread corruption, fraud and abuse; it is also an instrument through which the country can work to ensure that such events are never allowed to happen again,” said Ramaphosa.

“As a nation, we owe a great debt of gratitude to the Chairperson of the Commission, Chief Justice Raymond Zondo, for the monumental task that he and the evidence leaders, the investigators, the lawyers and the researchers have all undertaken over these past four years in the service of their country.

“I also wish to thank the Secretary of the Commission Prof Itumeleng Mosala and the other Commission staff for the valuable contribution they have made to the national effort to confront state capture.

“I wish to thank the many people who gave evidence before the Commission, and to the whistle-blowers, academics, investigators and journalists whose work contributed to uncovering many of the matters before the Commission.

“I wish to acknowledge the critical contribution of Adv. Thuli Madonsela, whose courageous and unflinching investigation set in motion the process to uncover these misdeeds.

“The submission of the final report today brings to an end the work of the Commission and marks the fulfilment of the weighty mandate given to Chief Justice Zondo in January 2018.

“In line with the directive of the High Court, within four months from this date, I will formally present to Parliament the full report of the Commission together with an indication of my intentions on the implementation of the Commission’s recommendations.”

Ramaphosa said the report offers an opportunity to make a decisive break from the era of state capture and return “our country” to the path of integrity.