President Cyril Ramaphosa of South Africa will testify in the ongoing investigations of embezzlement, bribery and corruption leveled against the country’s former head of state Jacob Zuma.
The South African presidency tweeted confirmation on Wednesday that Ramaphosa “will appear before the Judicial Commission of Inquiry Into Allegations of #StateCapture on 22, 23, 28 and 29 April 2021.” The commission, also known as the Zondo Commission, is not however focusing on the current president as a person of interest.
Rather, Ramaphosa will appear before the commission as leader of the ruling party, African National Congress (ANC). Ramaphosa is also thought to have insight because he used to be vice-president of the country.
The Presidency wishes to confirm that President @CyrilRamaphosa will appear before the Judicial Commission of Inquiry Into Allegations of #StateCapture on 22, 23, 28 and 29 April 2021. https://t.co/XMjHgPBv2J#StateCaptureInquiry #StateCaptureCommission— Presidency | South Africa 🇿🇦 (@PresidencyZA) March 24, 2021
Zuma’s presidency between 2009 and 2018 has been identified by investigators as one of the most corrupt for the Rainbow Nation in the post-apartheid era. But Zuma has denied all accusations of wrongdoing.
woes have compounded since he resigned unceremoniously in 2018 due to these very allegations. In 2018, he was charged with 16 counts of fraud, racketeering and money laundering involving an arms deal from the late 1990s that cost $2.5 billion.
He is also accused of ceding political influence to members of the Gupta family who have been sanctioned by the U.S. Treasury Department over corrupt activities. Some have alleged that the Gupta family was even allowed to appoint ministers and skip due process in transactions with the government.
The 78-year-old has also spoken through his lawyers of his disdain for the commission of inquiry that he believes is biased against him. In November, it was reported that Zuma refused to answer some questions, forcing the legal representative of the commission Paul Pistorius to say Zuma believes the inquiry is a “political conspiracy”.