If anyone thought President Jacob Zuma was cornered and out of time‚ his sudden move on Tuesday to announce a judicial commission of inquiry into state capture showed he is still a wily operator who can outmanoeuvre his political opponents. On the eve of the first meeting of the newly elected ANC national executive committee (NEC)‚ Zuma shot down one of the primary grounds for his recall from office — delaying the state capture inquiry. Zuma has also stolen the thunder from Cyril Ramaphosa somewhat by announcing the inquiry a few days before the ANC’s 106th anniversary rally where the deputy president was to make the fight against corruption and state capture the centrepiece of his first major policy statement as ANC leader. Zuma’s surprise decision to appoint the inquiry and to comply with the remedial action of former public protector Thuli Madonsela that Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng select the judge to head the inquiry means that those in the NEC who intended to raise the issue ...

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