JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) – South African opposition parties on Sunday urged President Jacob Zuma to report acts of corruption after the scandal-plagued leader said he knows who is stealing public funds.
Since coming to power in 2009, Zuma has survived a string of corruption scandals almost unscathed, but this month the country’s anti-graft watchdog called for a judicial inquiry into allegations of influence-peddling in the ANC government.
Zuma, in a bid to cement support in his home province of Kwazulu-Natal, on Friday told supporters in Zulu: “I know they are stealing. I’m just watching them. I know them,” local media reported.
Both the Democratic Alliance (DA) and the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF), the nation’s two largest opposition parties, on Sunday called on Zuma to share the information he has with authorities.
“President Jacob Zuma has a legal duty to report, to the law enforcement authorities, those who he knows to be engaged in criminal behaviour,” DA-leader Mmusi Maimane said in a statement.
The DA, which tabled a failed no-confidence motion against the president in Parliament last week, filed a criminal complaint against Zuma on Tuesday and will ask the police to also “investigate those people known by the President to be stealing”, Maimane said.
Zuma must immediately report those stealing public funds, otherwise the EFF too will lodge a criminal complaint against the president, the EFF said in a statement.
(Reporting by TJ Strydom; editing by Jason Neely)