Monday, October 8, 2012

News National De Klerk denies Nkandla-style benefits

News National De Klerk denies Nkandla-style benefits 07 OCT 2012 08:29 - SAPA Former president FW De Klerk has denied receiving benefits similar to those of President Jacob Zuma. OUR COVERAGE Will there be a jail on Nkandla for public works DG? Nkandla upgrade: Last-minute bid to hide costs Editorial: An inconvenient Nkandla truth? According to the Sunday Times, the properties of FW De Klerk did not have work done on them similar to that carried out at Zuma's Nkandla residence. De Klerk reportedly told the paper the state had paid to increase the height of a perimeter wall around his property in Fresnaye, Cape Town. It also paid for the installation of security cameras and the construction of a room and a toilet for his guards. When De Klerk retired, the government paid for a security guard's hut on the pavement of his Pretoria residence. On Friday, Public Works Minister Thulas Nxesi claimed the upgrades at Zuma's residents were similar to those of former presidents. He refused to disclose how much money had been spent on the security and other construction at Nkandla. Protector launches probe Meanwhile, Public Protector Thuli Madonsela has opened an investigation into publicly funded construction at Nkandla, City Press reported. "Yes, an investigation is under way," Madonsela told the paper. Madonsela said her office began preparing for an investigation after an official complaint was made a few months ago. She said Democratic Alliance parliamentary leader Lindiwe Mazibuko also made a complaint last week. "Because of our resource constraints, the investigation hasn't gone further than contacting the presidency," Madonsela told the paper. "We are asking the presidency who makes what decisions and who is accountable. This involves more than just [the department of] public works. The Mail & Guardian reported on Friday that the Nkandla homestead appeared to have been declared a national key point and was consequently subject to blanket secrecy. The government's own figures show that nearly R240-million is being spent on the homestead. This emerged as the government ratcheted up attempts to suppress the information using apartheid-era secrecy legislation. A document published by City Press last Sunday revealed that in March 2011 the state approved a security upgrade for an amount of R203-million at Nkandla. But department of public works director general Mandisa Fatyela-Lindie refused to comment in City Press, claiming the homestead was a national key point and thus subject to blanket secrecy. Skirting draconian defence laws with ease in Zuma's sleepy hometown Nxesi then defended the enormous expenditure and announced that the mere possession of the "top secret" document was illegal and he would investigate how it had reached the newspaper. However in May this year, Fatyela-Lindie herself supplied Nkandla's detailed cost allocations and projections in a briefing before Parliament's National Council of Provinces. This document can be freely accessed online. It suggests the department and Nxesi's claims that the information is "top secret" could be a recent construct, designed to prevent embarrassment for Zuma in the run-up to the ANC's elective conference in Mangaung in December. The cost schedule presented to the council reveals the following: Contractor fees at Nkandla are expected to total R193-million; Consultant fees at the homestead are projected to cost an extra R44-million. Three engineers canvassed by the Mail & Guardian expressed concern that, at 23% of the contractor's fee, this figure was very high. Consultant fees on such projects typically range between 10% and 15%; Several security upgrades for ministerial private residences are priced at exactly R100 000, which is consistent with the ministerial handbook regulations. The only two exceptions are Zuma's Nkandla, totalling R238-million and former President Nelson Mandela's Qunu residence, at R23-million, a fraction of what is being spent on Zuma; The department misled the M&G last November when it claimed it was spending only R36-million on Nkandla. In the cost schedule, it does reveal that R36-million was spent on contractor fees in "previous years". But the schedule also reveals that during the same period the department spent another R26-million on consultant fees. In addition to this glaring omission, the department was obfuscatory by failing to make reference to the enormous projected costs. - Staff reporter and Sapa Mail & Guardian Public works suffers with growing Nkandla headache 08 OCT 2012 10:29 - PHILLIP DE WET With the public protector investigating and questions being asked in Parliament, spending on government VIPs is causing trouble for public works. OUR COVERAGE Nkandla security dwarfs that of other presidents' homes Will there be a jail on Nkandla for public works DG? MORE COVERAGE De Klerk denies Nkandla-style benefits Public Works Minister Thulas Nxesi tried to justify spending R240-million on President Jacob Zuma's private residence in Nkandla on Friday, just as tried to defend his department's prestige portfolio to lawmakers in the past. But in less public settings he is less conciliatory. Minutes show that Nxesi told Parliament in March that spending on prestige projects – including Zuma's home and the official residences of Cabinet ministers – had been "over-sensationalised". But just four months earlier he had himself expressed deep frustration with that section of the department. Also read: Nkandla security dwarfs that of other presidents' homes "Prestige – you are making my life miserable. I used to be well-liked amongst my peers in Parliament. Now I'm rapidly becoming public enemy number one," Nxesi said, according to the written version of a speech prepared for an annual department lekgotla in November. "Prestige manages to combine fruitless and wasteful expenditure on a grand scale with universal client dissatisfaction. You do not fix bad management by throwing more money at it." On Friday he also had harsh words for his department overall. Public works was in disarray, he said, and could not generate trustworthy numbers to begin with – so the media should view with suspicion any information leaked from it. Public Protector Thuli Madonsela over the weekend confirmed preliminary information-gathering, which could lead to a full investigation, had begun, and that it received several complaints around the amount spent on Zuma's Nkandla residence. Several political parties are apparently also considering different ways to raise the matter in Parliament, and media organisations including the Mail & Guardian's Centre for Investigative Journalism are considering legal avenues to obtain details on spending at Nkandla. The public works department said Zuma himself started a big upgrade of the Nkandla compound at the same time as government money was spent to secure it. It has provided broad details on the work done, including providing water and sewage treatment systems, but said releasing financial information would be illegal and would endanger the safety of the president. But comparisons between spending at Nkandla and other projects of the department – provided by the department itself – shows a huge difference in costs. A schedule of expenditure the department provided to Parliament in May shows 16 private residences of office-bearers had been allocated exactly R100 000 each for security upgrades. Of those, four are in Johannesburg, four more in Pretoria, three in Pietermaritzburg, and one each in Kranskop, Bloemfontein, Polokwane, Durban and Cape Town. Kranskop is just a short distance south-east of Nkandla. None of the office bearers are identified, although one beneficiary appears to be Sports Minister Fikile Mbalula. The Ministerial Handbook caps security spending on private residences at R100 000, a number that appears to be used as a target rather than a maximum. In the same document, a three year project for work around the home of Nelson Mandela in Qunu is valued at R22.8-million. On Friday Nxesi implied that spending on the residences of Mandela, Thabo Mbeki and FW de Klerk would be similar to that at Nkandla, although spending "may be at different scales depending on where they are located". The schedule also shows that spending on Zuma's Nkandla residence will make up around two-thirds of the entire budget for all special and prestige projects, and will cost more than the combined expenditure on inner city regeneration, making government buildings more accessible for the disabled and all other private residences of office-bearers combined. Mail & Guardian - - De Klerk paved the way for these greedy despots. He was too busy screwing around on a yacht in the Mediterranean to think about his wife and South Africa. He has no room to comment on conditions in South Africa NOW! Frederik Willem de Klerk has gone down in history as the biggest traitor of the Afrikaner Folk. Okay, we all know the politics behind his agenda. Gained a Greek wife - Lost a Country! CRIME DOES PAY IN SOUTH AFRICA.

1 comment:

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    Julia Eilertsen