EDITORIAL | Thank you, Judge Zondo, for exposing the rot and showing the way | News24

President Cyril Ramaphosa and Chief Justice Raymond Zondo on the remaining handover of the state seize report.

South Africa owes Chief Justice Raymond Zondo a debt of gratitude.

Despite steady assaults on his character, integrity, and threats to his security, Zondo has stood agency and produced a seminal and voluminous report exposing the state seize rot nearly 4 years after his hearings began.

Zondo seemed exhausted when he handed over the past two volumes of his report back to President Cyril Ramaphosa on Wednesday night time – and understandably so. His experiences, little question compiled with the help of a reliable authorized group, didn’t solely expose systemic cases of corruption and state seize, but additionally recognized the trigger, and proposed options within the type of electoral reform and removing cadre deployment.  

It was no simple activity. Zondo needed to endure the abuse of lots who appeared earlier than him, not least former president Jacob Zuma who was finally imprisoned for contempt of court docket after refusing to proceed to look earlier than Zondo (who Zuma had appointed as president). In a historic twist of irony, Zuma, who initiated the fee on the instruction of former Public Protector Thuli Madonsela, was its greatest sufferer.

Zuma’s title was the golden thread all through Zondo’s experiences, and he should absolutely face extra prices in court docket quickly. So will his members of the family, associates and former colleagues who participated in, and benefitted from, the theft of billions of rands from South Africa’s coffers. 

This is a fork-in-the-road second for South Africa and Zondo has provided some pointed recommendation to us on how you can keep away from future cases of state seize. It all begins with electing the president.

Zondo has really helpful that the late Van Zyl Slabbert’s report on electoral reform from 2003 be dusted off and that the direct election of a president be critically thought of. This would require an modification to the Constitution, and would imply that political events should assume twice about who they put up as presidential candidates. 

As he wrote his remaining report, Parliament was given a six-month extension to finalise amendments to the Electoral Act to permit unbiased candidates to take part within the nationwide and provincial elections. This is the best second for the establishment to include Zondo’s suggestions and critically contemplate deeper electoral reform. 

Zondo’s discovering that cadre deployment is illegal and unconstitutional may have far-reaching penalties for presidency appointments the place ANC loyalty got here earlier than talent or competency. The governing get together should deal with this matter head-on and critically contemplate Zondo’s findings that state seize was dedicated by the get together’s deployed cadres. 

Lastly, Zondo’s ideas of a brand new tender system and unbiased adjudicator is lengthy overdue and will revolutionise procurement. Ramaphosa and the ANC authorities must be recommended for permitting the fee to finish its work, with the required budgetary assist and participation from the president and the chief.  

But the final word success of the fee will probably be seen within the implementation of its suggestions, not solely by the Hawks and the National Prosecuting Authority, but additionally by Ramaphosa, the ANC and Parliament. 

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