So there it was, revealed yesterday in all its rotten to the core glory, and almost at once the analysts began to pick apart the bones.
Now there was a solid 355 pages to wade through, but of course certain passages stand out from the rest.
It’s a little saddening to hear Thuli Madonsela say she wishes she had gone harder at Zuma (HERE), but I guess she wanted to make sure that it eventually saw the light of day.
Yesterday was that day, so let’s run through some of the things you should know according to TimesLive:
Zuma must appoint a commission of inquiry
Madonsela’s report recommends that the president appoint a judicial commission of inquiry to deal with state capture. This commission must be headed by a judge solely selected by the Chief Justice‚ Mogoeng Mogoeng.
This has disheartened some, as it entails another waiting period and more bureaucratic red tape, but at least certain bombshells have already been revealed by the report.
Jonas’s claims about Gupta Treasury job
The report reveals that Madonsela obtained and analysed the telephone records of people implicated by Deputy Finance Minister Mcebisi Jonas in offering him the top job at the Treasury.
Sidebar – more on that from Fin24:
Ajay Gupta, one of three Gupta brothers, offered Deputy Finance Minister Mcebisi Jonas [below] R600m to take up the position of finance minister, Jonas said in his interview with Madonsela. Gupta said if he had a bag with him, he could get 600 000 in cash immediately, Jonas said. Jonas told Madonsela that Zuma’s son, Duduzane, invited him to a meeting in October last year and they then traveled together in Duduzane’s vehicle to the Gupta family residence, which Jonas had never visited before.
At the house, Gupta told Jonas he could be made finance minister and while the family has made a lot of money from the state, the Treasury was a stumbling block for their business ambitions and that Jonas would have to remove the Treasury’s director general Lungisa Fuzile and other members of the executive management. Jonas rejected the offer and later went public with a statement.
That is bloody frightening, and props to Jonas for turning down the small matter of R600 million.
Optimum mine purchase ‘highly suspicious’
The state capture report has found that India’s Bank of Baroda played a “highly suspicious” role in the R2-billion purchase of Optimum Coal Holdings by Gupta-owned Tegeta Exploration and Resources.
The Eskom connection
Eskom features prominently in the state capture report which sheds light on the close friendship between its CEO Brian Molefe (below) and the Gupta family. Cell phone records show that Molefe and Ajay Gupta exchanged 58 calls in eight months between 2015 and 2016.
That, and Molefe was in the vicinity of the Guptas household 19 times in the three months to November last year.
SABC link to Guptas
The state capture report shows Madonsela interviewed Economic Freedom Fighters leader Julius Malema (below) and Sports Minister Fikile Mbalula for her probe into alleged state capture at the SABC. In her report, she proposes that any contract or contracts awarded to the Gupta owned New Age newspaper or TNA Media by the SABC should be investigated.
International man of mystery
The Public Protector’s report reveals how alleged arms deal kingpin Fana Hlongwane claimed he was like an “uncle” to President Jacob Zuma’s son Duduzane. Fana Hlongwane (below) is an enigmatic character who has avoided close scrutiny over the years despite his name often surfacing at the centre of major controversies.
If you had your doubts about the shady nature of our arms deals, and you’d be a fool not to, then this has once again highlighted the need for closer scrutiny.
Van Rooyen visited the Guptas
According to the report, Minister Van Rooyen (below) who replaced Minister Nene can be placed at the Saxonwold area on at least seven occasions including on the day before he was announced as minister. Madonsela said, “This looks anomalous given that at the time he was a member of Parliament based in Cape Town.”
This was one of the major bombshells, although earlier leaks mean it was a story well covered prior to yesterday.
Just remember this: the day before Des van Rooyen was appointed from left field as finance minister, sending the country’s markets plummeting and costing the country as much as R171 BILLION by some accounts (HERE), he was drinking tea with the Guptas.
Zuma may have to cough up
The high court in Pretoria said the president should pay the costs of the withdrawal of the application on an attorney and client scale. The question of whether Zuma should pay these costs in his personal capacity was reserved. Gauteng Judge President Dunstan Mlambo requested the parties to file supplemental papers on this question within seven days.
So he files a spurious attempt to delay the report being made public, withdraws it when he realises it’s only going to end badly (much like Shaun Abrahams and the NPA / Pravin fiasco), and there’s a chance the taxpayer might still have to cover his legal costs.
That’s all been kind of droll though, so let’s go to the Daily Maverick and check in with the superb Richard Poplak:
Around the country, the State of Capture report was being downloaded from a groaning website, its contents beamed into our mitochondria via blinking routers. Already, it was becoming a part of us, of our narrative, of our national body. And what did it say?
Summary: Jacob Zuma, Des Van Rooyen, Brian Molefe and the Guptas are big fat scumbags.
You will read much about Thuli Madonsela’s masterpiece today and in the days to come. But the real fight, it must be said, is just beginning. Allies will soon find themselves in different corners, wondering how once they danced together so intimately. We will be forced to ask, in louder and louder registers:
Save South Africa for what?
If we don’t come up with an appropriate answer, this insane cocaine-and-cough-syrup-binge of a historically unprecedented day will have dawned for no good reason.
In short, if you had hoped that the State Capture report was going to lead to Zuma being driven out on the spot you’re sorely mistaken.
So deep is the rot that of course his yes men will still back him, but at least the likes of Save South Africa and other prominent voices are standing up to be counted.
The wheels of change are turning, but they’re still fighting an uphill battle.
[imagesource: Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post] The town of Lonaconing, in Maryland, ...
[imagesource:here] On June 30, 2021, South Africans can wave the Section 12J tax incent...
[imagesource: The Late Late Show with James Corden/Youtube] It has been close to a mont...
[imagesource: Saving The Wild] A video from the parking lot of a Pick n Pay shopping co...
[imagesource: BBC] Visit The Telegraph's home page at any given time, and you're guaran...