05/05/2017 10:35 SAST | Updated 05/05/2017 10:37 SAST

Jackson Mthembu: Nkandla Has Cost Us Dearly

The ANC chief whip in Parliament says the party should not have defended Nkandla in Parliament.

On Thursday, the ANC chief whip in Parliament, Jackson Mthembu says the party's defence of Nkandla has cost us "dearly" and said it should never have happened.

Mthembu was speaking at a memorial service for a colleague when he made the remarks.

"We had a mid-term lekgotla where we agreed that we will never again as a caucus do wrong things regardless of who says we must do so," he said.

"One very wrong thing we did as Parliament was to agree that the President must not pay back the Nkandla money."

In 2016, the Constitutional Court found that Zuma had violated his oath of office for failing to implement the recommendations of the Public Protector after its investigation into the upgrades at his Nkandla residence. The Public Protector had found that Zuma should pay back a reasonable amount of money to the state for the upgrades.

But previously, Parliament had cleared Zuma of any wrongdoing in a parallel investigation it conducted, led by the ANC's majority caucus in Parliament.

On Thursday, Mthembu said Parliament had to hold the executive to account.

Mthembu has previously backed deputy president Cyril Ramaphosa to succeed Zuma has ANC president at the party's elective confrence in December. On Thursday, he appeared to do the same when he said it was tradition that the deputy president would succeed the president.