Zuma may only pay back R1 million for Nkandla

The Sunday Times has reported that President Jacob Zuma may only have to pay back around R1 million for improvements to his private Nkandla home, which cost taxpayers R246 million.

In March, the Constitutional Court ruled that Zuma failed to comply with the Public Protector’s prescribed remedial action on Nkandla.

Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng said the Public Protector’s report, which required Zuma to pay for non-security upgrades to his private home, was binding.

The National Assembly must determine “the reasonable costs that Zuma must pay for the upgrades”, the court ruled.

Some of the non-security upgrades included a swimming pool, amphitheatre, chicken run, and cattle kraal.

While the price of these upgrades to Zuma’s Nkandla home cost taxpayers millions of rand, the president may only have to pay back around R1 million.

Quoting advocate Wim Trengove, who represents the EFF, Zuma would only be expected to pay “to the extent to which he had been enriched”.

“He shouldn’t pay for the wasteful expenditure incurred by the state, because it is not his fault,” Trengrove is quoted as saying.

Since most of the R246 million bill was a result of wasteful expenditure, Zuma’s financial benefit of the non-security upgrades is much lower than the amount of tax money which was spent on them.

The full report is available in the Sunday Times of 8 May 2016.

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Zuma may only pay back R1 million for Nkandla