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Cope: Statement by Mbhazima Shilowa, Congress of the People deputy president, on President Zuma refusing to declare his interests (08/03/2010)

8th March 2010

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In 2005, Thabo Mbeki fired Jacob Zuma as Deputy President of the Republic following the conviction of his financial adviser Schabir Shaik for inappropriate financial relationship with Zuma. This inappropriate relationship was discovered once Zuma failed to declare his financial interests in Parliament.

Since then Zuma has continued to receive financial assistance from business people ostensibly in return for favours ranging from construction of his Nkandla home to assistance for his third wife with regards to accommodation.

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It therefore comes as no surprise that he has failed to declare his financial interests. He knows very well that as a member of the cabinet he is obliged to declare his interests just as previous heads of state have done. The only reason why he is not willing to declare his interest can only be that he has received a lot of resources from friends and associates in return for favours while in government, and / or that he lives beyond his means.

Having been in trouble with SARS for not being tax compliant, it may be that we are now sitting with a similar situation. This once more validates the motion of no confidence in President Zuma by Congress of the People. He is not only an embarrassment to the country, but flouts the constitution with impunity.

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