A blue light brigade escorting a cavalcade of luxury vehicles has arrived at the Zondo commission of inquiry premises in Johannesburg. It is believed that former president Jacob Zuma is in one of the vehicles. He is scheduled to begin day 2 of his testimony at 10am.
The Zondo commission ended on Monday afternoon, with former president Jacob Zuma still on the stand. He had been questioned by evidence leader Advocate Paul Pretorius about the evidence of former GCIS head, Themba Maseko.
Maseko alleged that Zuma had put pressure on him to direct government’s advertising budget to the Gupta’s The New Age publication. Zuma said he could not remember if the conversations happened.
And the Zondo commission has commenced with day 2 of Zuma’s proceedings.
Zuma wants to make a statement. He says his PA received a call last night. The caller wanted to kill him and his children.
Zuma says he has lost a child before.
Zondo says it is important that witnesses are protected. But he asked whether “by virtue of your position”, Zuma already has a lot of security. He wonders what other protection the commission could add.
Zondo suggests that the commission and Zuma’s legal team talk to each other about the issue of Zuma’s protection.
Zondo: “It is totally unacceptable for anyone to want to use violence to want to engage in all kinds of illegal means when they are unhappy about anybody, because our legal system is such that people can go to courts, can go to the police, if they have complaints against other people.”
Zondo reiterates that the threats are unacceptable.
Any threats that have been made against Mr Zuma’s counsel or any lawyer is totally unacceptable, too, Zondo says.
Every lawyer should feel free to come and represent their clients, Zondo adds.
“I want to ask that, whatever assistance the legal team of the commission can provide, if Zuma’s counsel needs protection, that everything be done to assist in that regard.” – Zondo.