Civil society organisation Democracy in Action has filed an urgent interdict application to stop President Cyril Ramaphosa from receiving the first part of the Commission of Inquiry into Allegations of State Capture’s report.
Democracy in Action chairperson, Thabo Mtsweni has asked the Johannesburg High Court to interdict the handover to Ramaphosa, as he believes that the president “is not the correct person” to receive the report.
Mtsweni also wants the court to grant an order forcing the report to be delivered to Deputy President David Mabuza instead.
Last month, the organisation had written to Zondo asking him to determine if there may be a conflict of interest in Ramaphosa’s receiving the report.
The organisation argued that Ramaphosa was the deputy president during the state capture era, as well as him being implicated by some witnesses at the commission.
The commission’s chairperson, Acting Chief Justice Raymond Zondo, is set to handover the first part of report to Ramaphosa at the Union Buildings in Pretoria on Tuesday, 4 January.
The handover will be streamed live, the Presidency confirmed on Monday.
United Democratic Movement (UDM) leader Bantu Holomisa last week echoed the organisation’s sentiments, further criticising Ramaphosa’s request to be given time to consider the final state capture report.
“Mr President, given that you were a witness in the commission, I’d suggest that Judge Zondo should instead present the report to Parliament live. Finished and klaar,” Holomisa wrote on Twitter.
One South Africa (OSA) movement leader Mmusi Maimane also weighed in, saying Ramaphosa has taken too long to consider reports in the past.
The commission was granted a sixth extension last month to submit its report.
Zondo had asked the Pretoria High Court for another extension, saying that “a lot of progress have been made” over the past few months, but some parts of the reports “will still need further work beyond the end of December”.
While Zondo previously pointed out there would only be a final report, he proposed that he would deliver his report in three parts.
The second part is anticipated to be handed over at the end of January 2022, while the final part will be submitted at the end of February 2022.
The commission was expected to finalise the state capture report and hand it over to the president by 1 January.
In light of the extension, Ramaphosa will have until the end of June 2022 to submit a copy of the report to Parliament and reveal what he will do with the State Capture Inquiry’s recommendations.
The President had also approached the court to clarify if he could decide when to release the report.
He further wanted the court to clear up whether he had to deliver it to Parliament within two weeks of receiving it.