Former South African president attests to persecution

UNITED STATES, WASHINGTON (VOP TODAY NEWS) — Former South African President Jacob Zuma confirmed on Monday that he was “persecuted” for charges of looting state money while in power.

“I have been persecuted by the allegations that I am the king of the corrupt,” Zuma told the committee.

“They have called me all the qualities and I did not want to,” he said. “I think it’s important to respect each other.”

Zuma is before the commission of inquiry to answer testimony he accuses of spreading corruption while in power.

Zuma appeared relaxed before the five-day televised hearings. On Sunday, he posted a video on his Twitter account showing him dancing and chanting “Zuma should fall,” and then laughing out loud.

“The committee asked me to come and give my information and provide the information I have,” Zuma told reporters this week. “I’ll go and see how things go.”

The former president was accused of promoting a culture of corruption during his nine-year rule before being ousted by the ruling African National Congress (ANC) in 2018 and replaced by Cyril Ramaphosa as president.

It is expected that the supporters of the former president and his opponents will gather outside the headquarters of the Commission of Inquiry, while will allow about 200 people from the public to attend the hearing.

Zuma, 77, is not legally bound to appear before the commission of inquiry into the “state exploitation” scandal and it is unclear whether the former president will be a collaborator during the investigation.

Zuma denied any wrongdoing and rejected the concept of “state exploitation,” while his lawyers described the investigation as an attempt to “beat” his client and “humiliate him.”

The Commission of Inquiry rejected the former president’s request for questions and invited him to present his “point of view on the matter” after other witnesses had provided compelling evidence against him.

The committee, headed by Judge Raymond Zondo, is considering a series of deals involving government officials, the wealthy Gupta family and state-owned companies.

– Bribes, sweets and alcohol –

According to one witness, Angelo Agrizzi, the former president received a $ 2200 monthly bribe delivered in luxury bags from a company trying to evade police investigations.

Theoretically was the money for his charity.

Agrizi said his company also organized free parties and provided large quantities of alcohol, as well as Christmas candy, to safeguard the interests of Zuma’s partners.

On the other hand, the former Minister of Finance Nhlanhla Nini, who dismissed Zuma in 2015, that the latter adopted policies on nuclear energy and the aviation industry to serve the interests of the Gupta family.

The Gupta brothers accuse fraudulent profit from government contracts, including power and transportation deals.

Uta Gupta has a uranium mine that has seen profits rise as a result of nuclear deals, as well as a group of mining, technology and media companies.

Reports indicate that the family controlled the former president to the extent that its members were able to choose some ministers of his government.

Former Minister Mseip Isi Jonas told the committee how the Gupta brothers came to the Ministry of Finance in 2015 for their assistance in obtaining contracts and a bribe of 600 million rand (about 40 million euros).

Zuma was forced to investigate in January 2018, shortly before leaving office, after failing in a legal battle to circumvent the disciplinary court proceedings.

Zuma has other charges related to illicit gain and is linked to an arms deal before he becomes president.

Gupta Ajay, Atoll and Rajesh, born in India, South Africa, are now in Dubai and deny any wrongdoing.

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