Acting chief justice Raymond Zondo’s inquiry into state capture will be a catastrophic failure if it accedes to President Cyril Ramaphosa’s request that it make no recommendations on changing the party’s cadre deployment policy.

This policy — or the bastardised version that emerged during Jacob Zuma’s tenure — was a central theme when Ramaphosa gave evidence to the commission both in April and last week. Both Ramaphosa and Gwede Mantashe, now chair of the ANC after previously serving as secretary-general, defended the policy vigorously to the commission...

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