World Bulletin / News Desk
South Africa's police minister said on Thursday that President Jacob Zuma will not be liable to repay money spent on security upgrades to his rural home, which opposition parties have slammed as lavish and wasteful.
Police Minister Nathi Nhleko ruled in a nationally televised address that the upgrades, which have sparked a public outcry and included a swimming pool and animal enclosures, were legitimate security features.
"The state president is therefore not liable to pay for any of these security features," the minister said.
Nhleko's findings are in sharp contrast to those of Public Protector Thuli Madonsela, who investigated the project and upgrades which cost over $20 million in total.
In March last year, Madonsela ruled that Zuma had benefited unduly from the upgrades to his Nkandla home, and recommended he pay back some of the money.
Madonsela said Zuma should "pay a reasonable percentage of the cost" of upgrades not directly related to security and that he should determine that figure with the assistance of the National Treasury and police.
But Nhleko said the swimming pool was needed for fire-fighting purposes and the animal enclosures were needed to prevent cattle and chickens from setting off motion detectors.Güncelleme Tarihi: 28 Mayıs 2015, 16:58