South African Public Protector Thuli Madonsela said on Saturday that the investigations into alleged “state capture” by the Indian Gupta family was gaining momentum.
In an interview with Xinhua, Madonsela said she is investigating if the wealthy Gupta family had exerted undue influence on President Jacob Zuma in the appointment of cabinet ministers.
The Gupta family, which keeps close ties with Zuma and his family, has been under fire for allegedly influencing Zuma in the appointment of David van Royen as finance minister after Zuma sacked Nhlanhla Nene in December last year.
Madonsela said, “The investigations started as soon as the matter was determined. We have already written to the President. The investigation is gaining momentum now that we have got funds by investing additional resources in the investigation. We could not do nothing, but had to start at a snail pace.”
Earlier this week, the National Treasury committed 1.5 million rand (about 102,000 US dollars ) to Madonsela’s office to enable it to complete the task.
Madonsela said justice is the answer to this problem, but refrained to say how long the investigation would end.
As required by the law, the job should be finished within 30 days, Madonsela said.
“I do not want to commit to date because every investigation acquires its own life. The answer to all these problems in the world is to ensure that there is justice, not just by name but substantive justice,” she said.
Mandonseal said she is happy with the additional funding which will assist her to expedite the investigations
She said investigating the matter with insufficient resources would mean that it would take longer time to finish the investigation.
The Catholic Dominican Order and the opposition Democratic Alliance (DA) requested the Public Protector to investigate the state capture by the Guptas after Deputy Finance Minister Mcebisi Jonas and former Member of Parliament Vytjie Mentor said they were offered cabinet positions by the Guptas.