South Africa's Public Protector Thuli Madonsela has called for more resources to investigate whether President Jacob Zuma allowed a wealthy business family to decide on cabinet appointments. As Ivor Bennett reports, the scandal surrounding the Gupta family took a dramatic turn earlier this year after deputy finance minister Mcebisi Jonas said they had offered him his boss's job, an allegation that led to calls for Zuma to resign.
Adored by his supporters.... But the man and his slogans still scrutinised by others. As South Africa's President, Jacob Zuma spent 16 million dollars of state funds on upgrades to his private home. He was deemed to have breached the constitution when he refused to pay it back. in a battle that put corruption in South Africa, and its watchdog, on the map. (SOUNDBITE) (English) PUBLIC PROTECTOR, THULI MADONSELA SAYING: "I would've had more one-to-one conversations with President Zuma because as investigators we don't invent the rules, we just enforce them." But doing so has made her fear for her life. Last month learning that hit men had been hired to kill her. But if it was an attempt to silence her, it's failed. (SOUNDBITE) (English) PUBLIC PROTECTOR, THULI MADONSELA SAYING: "The average South African citizen has to be deeply concerned about corruption because corruption corrodes democracy, corruption is dangerous. It steals resources and it also steals the soul of the nation." Her next focus is South Africa's so-called Guptagate. A wealthy family accused of being too close to the government. So much so, it's alleged Zuma even allowed them to decide on cabinet positions. South Africa's deputy Finance Minister claiming they offered him the job of his boss. (SOUNDBITE) (English) PUBLIC PROTECTOR, THULI MADONSELA SAYING: "We've been asked to investigate whether indeed there is that phenomenon of state capture and secondly, the specific allegations, alleged unlawful involvement of the Gupta family in the choice of ministers." Both Zuma and the Guptas have denied the claims. While Madonsela has requested more resources, hoping to complete her investigation before she steps down in October.