The chairperson of the commission of inquiry probing allegations of corruption and State capture, Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo on Monday appealed to South Africans to come forward with any information and evidence they think might help the commission in its investigation.
Zondo opened the first day of the inquiry, and said the response from the public on coming forward with evidence has been disappointing.
"I would like the public to please come forward with information. We all know there are many people out there who have evidence...and it doesn't help the country and the commission when they don't come forward.
"This commission is an opportunity for all of us in the country to help and contribute. People in municipalities, local government may have information... we urge all South Africans to come forward and assist this commission."
The inquiry has had to deal with continued lack of cooperation from officials at government departments, said Zondo. Furthermore, there has not been much progress from the State security office regarding top security clearance for inquiry staff.
Zondo said he wrote to Minister of Finance Nhlanhla Nene twice asking him to intervene because of the slow pace at which the department's officials were dealing with funding.
"The minister interfered successfully on those two occasions. This commission needs full cooperation from everyone... government departments must give full cooperation," he said.
Former president Jacob Zuma appointed the commission to probe the abuse of political influence and state funds by a network of the Gupta family and politicians, who allegedly fleeced the state of billions of rands through irregular dealings with South Africa's State-owned companies.
The commission's probe emanates from former public protector Thuli Madonsela's explosive report on the extent of the capture of the South African State by top officials, politicians and leaders of State-owned enterprises. Zuma and two cabinet ministers launched litigation against the release of the State capture report, with Zuma arguing that he was not granted enough time to reply to Madonsela's questions on the Gupta's alleged undue influence on him. The high court ordered the release of the report in November 2016.
Earlier this month, Zondo was successfully granted an extension for the allocated time frame for the commission to complete its work from 180 days to two years by the high court.
Witnesses scheduled to appear before the commission this week will include former deputy finance minister Mcebisi Jonas, former government spokesperson Themba Maseko, former African National Congress MP Vytjie Mentor, and incumbent government spokesperson Phumla Williams.