President Cyril Ramaphosa said on Thursday he will appear before the Zondo Commission of Inquiry so that he can answer questions about what he knew and didn’t know about state capture.
He has also said he would answer questions around the Gupta’s influence on the state when he was both deputy president of the ANC and of the country.
Ramaphosa said he would go to the Zondo inquiry to give an account because if he answers in public about what he did to stop state capture people would not believe him.
“One can cite a whole range of instances where one sought to take a different approach [from those involved in state capture] and the approach did not succeed, but people will still remain unbelieving. They will still say, ‘We don’t believe you’,” he said.
The president was fielding questions from foreign journalists in Rosebank on Thursday evening.
“In time I guess I am going to be required to appear before the commission to answer certain things as former deputy president both in the state and in the party, and also [now] as president of the ANC,” he said.
Ramaphosa said people should be patient with the Zondo Commission because it was the best place to get to the heart of state capture.
The DA has placed pressure on Ramaphosa to answer before the Zondo commission, as he was the second in charge when much of the alleged corruption occurred.
Ramaphosa lamented the weakening of the prosecutorial capabilities of the state as a result of state capture and said people want to see people implicated to be arrested, charged, found guilty and then sent to jail.
When asked about how he planned to deal with home affairs minister Malusi Gigaba, after the Public Protector found that he violated the constitution and the executive members ethics code, Ramaphosa said he was still studying the report.
“The report just hit my desk. I am going to read that report and apply my mind,” he said.
On Wednesday, Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane agreed with the courts that Gigaba had lied under oath about approving the Oppenheimer’s facility at the airport.
She has ordered Ramaphosa to take action against Gigaba within two weeks.
But Gigaba’s woes were not over. On Thursday, the Constitutional Court dismissed Gigaba’s application for leave to appeal against a lower court ruling that he lied under oath in the Fireblade case.