South African sate capture hearings to start in August


An inquiry into allegations of influence peddling around former president Jacob Zuma and businessman friends of his will begin formal public hearings in August and could take two years or more, the head of the commission said.

The allegations around Zuma, forced from office in February by his ruling African National Congress (ANC) party, and the Gupta family tarred major companies including KPMG and McKinsey and triggered the revolt against Zuma.

Zuma and the Indian national Guptas consistently denied wrongdoing.

KPMG sacked its South African leadership last September after it found work done for companies owned by the Gupta family, “fell considerably short” of its standards.

Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo, who heads the inquiry, said in a televised news briefing it would likely take 18 months to two years “based on what we know now.”
“It may well be when investigations go on we find there needs to be more time,” he said.

The commission stems from a 2016 anti-graft report by the Public Protector, a regulatory office with a robust constitutional mandate, calling for an investigation into what is known in South Africa as “state capture.”

The commission will be able to make recommendations for prosecutions.