Report: Zuma 'security' upgrades were corrupt

Nov. 30, 2013 at 2:24 PM

JOHANNESBURG, South Africa, Nov. 30 (UPI) -- A draft government report harshly criticizes use of taxpayer money to upgrade security at the home of South African President Jacob Zuma.

The report prepared for South Africa's top anti-corruption watchdog, blasts the publicly funded work done at Zuma's personal residence in Nkandla, in rural KwaZuu-Natal Province. The report states 215 million rand ($21 million) was spent to upgrade Zuma's home with security befitting a head of state.

Among the improvements listed in the report is a swimming pool -- dubbed a fire pool built under the pretense the water would help fight a fire at the home -- along with a visitors' center, amphitheater, cattle enclosure, marquee area, extensive paving and new houses for relocated relatives, Britain's The Guardian reported Saturday.

If the final report published by public prosecutor Thuli Madonsela includes the allegations, lawmakers in opposition parties said they would consider moving forward with impeachment proceedings, charging Zuma has violated two parts of his ethical responsibilities as president: to protect public funds and lying to Parliament.

The allegations of corruption first surfaced in 2009, at which time Zuma promised lawmakers all the personal work at the property was done at his own expense.

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