- The SIU's Special Tribunal is reportedly trying to reclaim millions of rands that were spent on upgrades at former president Jacob Zuma's Nkandla homestead
- The trial has been almost a week long and the architect, Minenhle Makhanya, is representing himself in the in-camera proceedings
- The trial is happening at the Pietermaritzburg High Court where the Special Tribunal is hoping that Makhanya pays R155m back to taxpayers
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PIETERMARITZBURG - The Special Investigating Unit's (SIU) Special Tribunal has been trying to bring back some of the R246 million spent on the Nkandla homestead upgrades. The trial has been a week-long proceeding with a civil recovery being put against the homestead's architect Minenhle Makhanya.
The proceedings began at the Pietermaritzburg High Court on Monday, 27 September. The tribunal wishes that Makhanya pays approximately R155 million back as this was allegedly used for upgrades and was funded by taxpayers.
Reports state that the matter is being held in-camera after Judge Kate Pillay ordered so following an application by the SIU. This was done due to the sensitive details about former president Jacob Zuma's homestead which may be disclosed.
According to TimesLIVE, an expert forensic investigator was the first witness to testify from the SIU. The report explained that there were a number of contentious home improvements made such as a swimming pool which was dubbed a 'fire pool'.
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A report by IOL explained that ex-public protector Thuli Madonsela, in 2014, released a report about the upgrades made at Msholozi's homestead and found that he and his family had made the most out of the 'security measures' that were implemented.
South Africans used social media to weigh in on the trial. Read some of their responses below:
"Nkandla's upgrade was done by Supply Chain officials.
1. Auction their assets
2. Freeze their Pension Funds."
"How is the architect responsible? Surely the minister of public works signed off - is he not responsible? Passing the buck?"
"Who from Government signed off on the project?"
Jacob Zuma discharged from hospital, returns home to Nkandla, Mzansi reacts
Previously, Briefly News reported that former president Jacob Zuma has returned home after being discharged from the hospital according to reports. Zuma was released from prison on medical parole following a decision made by the National Commissioner of correctional services, Arthur Fraser.
SABC News reported that a reliable source informed them that the former president is back at Nkandla.
Social media users took to the internet in reaction to the news
"I am confused cause we support the release of JZ, some of us went to prison because of that. Today you say is a private matter. Why are you using us?"
"Why is it an issue to announce that he is back home? He is still a public figure living on taxpayers money after all."