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It’s taken a long time for the likes of influential leaders like former trade union boss Zwelinzima Vavi and former finance minister Trevor Manuel to publicly indicate that they have been mistaken in supporting President Jacob Zuma, but Zupta whistleblower Vytjie Mentor has never been afraid to state her position. The former ANC Member of Parliament lifted the lid on the relationship between the Zuma and Gupta families. The Guptas, from India, have amassed huge wealth while living in South Africa and their names pop up frequently when there is the whiff of a big state contract. Mentor is the person who revealed that she had been offered a position in South Africa’s Cabinet by the Guptas – who are business people, not politicians. Mentor’s revelations add to a picture that has developed of the Zuma and Gupta families working on a strategy to tap into state assets. Gaining control of key state entities by positioning associates in top jobs appears to be part of that plan. Zuma has an array of friends running state entities – Dudu Myeni at national airline SAA, Brian Molefe at utility Eskom, Hlaudi Motsoeneng at the SABC, to name just a few. Zuma has been trying to stop outgoing Public Protector Thuli Madonsela from completing an investigation into state capture allegations, this week asking for his lawyers to question witnesses (see Zuma’s statement here). But Vytjie Mentor is not afraid: she has hit back at Zuma, confirming she is a whistleblower. On her Facebook page, she says she is not cowed by Zuma’s bullying tactics. She calls him a liar and a coward. – Jackie Cameron
By Jeff Wicks
Johannesburg – Firebrand former ANC MP Vytjie Mentor has set her sights on President Jacob Zuma, challenging him to a public debate on state capture.
This after Zuma asked to see the evidence gathered by Public Protector Thuli Madonsela in her probe into “state capture” on Monday.
Hours later Mentor took to Facebook, the medium through which she first gained prominence for her announcement that she had been offered a Cabinet position by the Gupta family.
“Dear Zuma, I spoke to the PP. I revealed things about you and about your folly relationship with the Gupta’s through your son,” she wrote.
“I can go one-on-one with you on a publicly-televised hearing only after the PP releases her report, with or without you having responded to the questions she posed to you six months ago,” Mentor added.
“I am not scared of you, of your lies, your tricks, your delaying tactics, your attempted intimidation, your harassment, and what you normally do to people.
“You are a coward that hides behind state power all the time. Wherever have you heard a person that’s being investigated by the PP making the silly demands you are making? Power has really ran to your head. I feel sorry for you,” she said.
Vytjie Mentor dares Zuma to public debate on state capture. The ex ANC MP says Zuma is a liar and says his demands to the PP are ‘silly’.
— LesetjaMO (@MoLesetja) October 11, 2016
In a statement issued by the Presidency on Monday, Zuma’s demands for Madonsela’s probe were laid out.
Not only does the president want access to the evidence, but he or his legal representative should be allowed to question the witnesses who appeared in front of the Public Protector.
“President Jacob Zuma has written to the Public Protector, Advocate Thuli Madonsela, requesting her to allow him or his legal representative to question other witnesses, determined by the Public Protector, who have appeared before [her],” the statement read. – News24
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