Death threats, Themba Maseko & the Guptas - four telling Zuma quotes

16 July 2019 - 14:40 By Cebelihle Bhengu
Former president Jacob Zuma testifying at the state capture inquiry on Monday.
Former president Jacob Zuma testifying at the state capture inquiry on Monday.
Image: Alon Skuy

Former president Jacob Zuma is continuing his testimony before the commission into state capture on Tuesday. He has so far claimed that his life and those of his family have been threatened, even as recently as Monday, after his first appearance before the commission.

He has also denied financing the New Age, a newspaper which was owned by the controversial Gupta family and being the brains behind the removal of Themba Maseko from the Government Communication Information System (GCIS).

LISTEN | Day 2 - Zuma's great denial

Here's Zuma's testimony so far in four telling quotes:

Death threats

"Yesterday between 8pm-9pm, my PA was phoned by a person she does not know and this person said 'you must tell Zuma that we are going to kill him, and we are also going to kill his children as well as some people around him'. So she informed me this morning."

Former president Jacob Zuma appeared at the Zondo commission of inquiry into state capture in Johannesburg on July 16 2019. Zuma stated that following his first day of testimony at the commission, he received death threats towards him and his family.

Ajay Gupta phone calls to Maseko

"I am not sure whether I should really interpret people's mood and how they addressed one another because it is Maseko who discussed this with Mr Gupta. I think the trend is that I should be commenting on interactions I was not a part of."

Zuma said this in response to the evidence leader's question about the call allegedly made by Ajay Gupta to Themba Maseko in 2010, during which Gupta allegedly demanded a meeting to discuss government advertising in the New Age.

Government support of New Age

"I don't know really because I have never participated in the discussion on that matter with government people. From time to time they briefed me on the progress they were making in establishing the business, not its financing."

Themba Maseko's removal at GCIS

"At times, the changes would come because the DGs would perform better in one place and would therefore be replaced, but I can't remember on this particular DG what was the problem."

This was Zuma's response to the eventual removal of Maseko from GCIS. Maseko alleged before the commission that he had been removed due to his refusal to give the Guptas government business for their media business venture. 


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