Headlines

Ntombela Refutes Dukwana Claims

  • Vows ex-MEC was assisted to access documents
  • FS pledges co-operation with Zondo Commission

The Free State government gave former MEC Mxolisi Dukwana all the information he needed as well as access to his computer and office six months ago as part of its commitment to the Zondo Commission of enquiry into allegations of state capture.

Speaking in Thaba Nchu on Tuesday, Premier Sisi Ntombela said Dukwana’s claims in the media that the provincial government reneged on its undertaking to provide him access to all information he needed to present as evidence of state capture in the province were false.

“We hear through the grapevine that Ntate Dukwana is claiming that we had not lived up to the promise of giving him anything he needs as evidence to back up his claims of wrong-doing. However I’m surprised by all this because in as far as we know he has been given full co-operation and access to his computer and office,” said Ntombela.

She noted: “The only thing that I hear he is still looking for is his diary, and I must say for the record that we will never turn against our word to co-operate with the Zondo Commission as we have said from the onset. Our doors and books are open to peruse as we do not have anything to hide; fighting and ending corruption is in our best interest as government.”

Ntombela added she would further get the director general in his office, Kopung Ralikontsane, to follow up on Dukwana’s claims and ensure the matter is handled promptly.

Dukwana, who was at the forefront of failed attempts to topple the ANC provincial executive committee (PEC) led by provincial chairman Sam Mashinini, had earlier in the year voluntarily appeared before the Commission where he made shocking allegations about corruption in the province. He alleged the provincial government gave substantial advertising to the now defunct New Age Newspaper and the ANN7 news channel.

The former MEC resigned from the ruling party’s PEC as a co-opted member apparently in solidarity with disgruntled members of the ANC who felt left out after the party’s provincial elective conference.

In his fresh claims, Dukwana told the Commission that he was not getting the necessary help from the Free State provincial government in accessing documentation needed to back his claims, prompting Justice Zondo to express concern that it has been six months since the provincial government made the undertaking to assist Dukwana get whatever evidence he needed.

Zondo then reportedly instructed his aides to ensure a speedy meeting takes place between the Free State provincial government and Dukwana to address the matter once and for all.

In reaction to this, Ntombela said her office’s door is always opened for engagement, adding the provincial government will continue to assist in every way possible to enable the Commission to do its work.

Attempts to get Dukwana to comment on his recent claims draw a blank by the time of going to press.

By: Ramosidi Matekane