Jacob Zuma. Picture: ALON SKUY​
Jacob Zuma. Picture: ALON SKUY​

The national conference of the ANC has resolved that President Jacob Zuma must immediately appoint the judicial commission of inquiry into state capture as recommended by former public protector Thuli Madonsela.

This puts more pressure on Zuma to appoint the commission following a court ruling last Wednesday that ordered him to appoint the commission within 30 days. This is a blow to Zuma as the president has expressed his intention to appeal against the court ruling.

In addition‚ Zuma appears to have lost the battle within the ANC as the national conference resolved that the commission should focus only on Madonsela’s recommendations.

Zuma and his national executive committee supporters were pushing for a broad inquiry dating back to 1994.

Madonsela released the report with allegations of an improper relationship between Zuma‚ his son Duduzane‚ other state officials and the Gupta family in November 2016.

"On the ANC reputation and integrity dealing with corruption‚ [it was decided that we] implement the national executive committee resolution on state capture including the expeditious establishment of a judicial commission of inquiry‚" said Fikile Mbalula‚ chairman of the subcommittee on organisational renewal.

Last week, the court found that Zuma was unable effectively to exercise his powers as head of state due to personal conflicts of interest.

"The public protector’s recommendation, as adopted by the national executive committee‚ is being implemented. The committee said they agree with the judicial commission of inquiry which arose from the public protector’s recommendations‚ so they need to be implemented expeditiously‚" said Mbalula.

The court found that Madonsela’s remedial action was broad enough to encompass the revelations in the leaked Gupta
e-mails‚ which came to light after the release of her State of Capture report.

Newly elected ANC president Cyril Ramaphosa urged conference delegates to "protect the integrity" of the ruling party’s national conference and not let it "degenerate into controversy and huge legal suits that will nullify the result" of the election of the party’s top six.

Ramaphosa said this in a video leaked to journalists attending the conference at Nasrec, where he had addressed delegates. He believed some delegates might be unhappy with the results‚ but that they created a "beachhead to be able to start the process of reinstilling the values of our movement in the ANC and hoping people will embrace that", he said.

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