South Africa Potentially Facing a New, More Sinister State Capture, Warns Legal Head of Zondo Commission

South Africa could be heading towards a new era of state capture that may prove to be “darker and more sinister” than what the nation has previously experienced, according to Paul Pretorius, SC, who served as the head of the state’s legal team during the Zondo Commission [2]. Pretorius shared his concerns during a discussion at the University of Pretoria’s GIBS business school about the lessons learned from the drawn-out Zondo inquiry [2].

The Judicial Commission of Inquiry into State Capture was chaired by Raymond Zondo, South Africa’s acting chief justice [3]. On February 28, Zondo submitted the third and penultimate part of the commission’s report [3]. The first part of the report, spanning over 870 pages, was published on the presidency’s website on January 4, and handed to President Cyril Ramaphosa [8, 9, 10].

The State Capture Commission’s report concluded that “there can be no doubt that state capture happened in South Africa” [6]. It revealed extensive money laundering networks in the country, with the final reports handed over to President Ramaphosa on June 23 [7].

Pretorius’s recent remarks underscore the importance of continued vigilance in the face of potential state capture threats. South Africa must take heed of the lessons learned from the Zondo Commission and work towards preventing any new, more sinister forms of state capture from taking root in the country.

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