Zuma pays back Nkandla money

JOHANNESBURG. — President Jacob Zuma has paid back the R7,8 million he owed for the non-security renovations to his Nkandla homestead.

Yolisa Tyantsi, acting spokesperson for the national treasury, confirmed that President Zuma had paid the money last week.

In a statement today, the presidency confirmed that President Zuma had raised the amount through a home loan obtained from VBS Mutual Bank. The loan was obtained “on its standard terms”.

The bank is one of the few financial institutions that offer home loans in respect of land owned by traditional authorities, the statement said.

President Zuma had been given until September 29 to make the payment.

This was after the Constitutional Court found on March 31 that he had violated the Constitution with his handling of the Nkandla issue and would have to pay back a portion of the money spent on upgrades to his private home.

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The treasury, which was instructed to determine the amount Zuma had to pay for items like the swimming pool, chicken run, kraal, amphitheatre and visitors’ centre, calculated that the president needed to pay back a total amount of R7,8 million.

He is scheduled to answer questions in the National Assembly today.

City Press reported in July that President Zuma and his family had decided against donations from benefactors and ANC members to help him pay back his Nkandla bill.

In April, he survived an impeachment vote in parliament after the court’s ruling over the Nkandla costs, but the long-running scandal has damaged him.

In August, the ruling African National Congress suffered its worst-ever losses in municipal elections. — City Press/Reuters.