Advertise with fastmoving.co.za
 
 

Hawks back off Gordhan
Hawks back off Gordhan

Hawks back off Gordhan

ECONOMIC NEWS

IOL Business - Feb 29th 2016, 09:25

There is no investigation into Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan, the Hawks confirmed yesterday (26 February), despite a series of questions sent to him about his knowledge of a so-called “rogue” intelligence unit that allegedly operated at the SA Revenue Service during his term as commissioner there. 

President Jacob Zuma and the ANC launched a damage-control exercise after news broke of the letter to Gordhan, with both of them expressing their full confidence in him.

However, they contradicted one another on the motives behind the letter.

Whereas ANC secretary-general Gwede Mantashe described the developments as “a well-calculated destabilisation plan with all the elements of disinformation, falsehoods, and exaggerated facts”, Zuma dismissed such concerns as “rumours and gossip, which insinuate some conspiracy against Minister Gordhan”.

“These baseless rumours and gossip will not deter or divert government from moving forward with promoting fiscal consolidation and pushing for inclusive growth and job creation,” Zuma said.

Gordhan described the letter as an attempt to “intimidate and distract” him and the Treasury from their work in preparing the Budget.

“There is a group of people that are not interested in the economic stability of this country and the welfare of its people,” Gordhan said.

“It seems they are interested in disrupting institutions and destroying reputations.”

He said he had deliberately kept quiet about the Hawks letter, which he received last Thursday (25 February), to avoid jeopardising the government’s reaction to the Budget and efforts to improve investor confidence.

He was warned in the letter not to “interfere with state witnesses”, without being told who they were.
If necessary, he would take legal action to protect himself and the Treasury from “whatever elements (are) seeking to discredit me, the institution, and its integrity”.

He could say “categorically” that the Hawks had no reason to investigate him. Gordhan thanked the ANC for “the support I have now received” and for its determination to ensure “vital state institutions” such as the Treasury and Sars were not damaged.

Mantashe said the timing of the letter from the Hawks “indicates clearly that there was intention to distract the minister” as he put the final changes to this week’s Budget.

Gordhan’s efforts to restore investor confidence were being undermined in an attempt to “reverse the gains our economy has made and have a destabilising effect in the long term”, Mantashe maintained.

It was “disconcerting” that the questions to Gordhan had been leaked. The ANC had “reliable information” as to who was responsible and would “be engaging the person”.

“In the event that the Hawks have anything to investigate related to the minister and Sars, it would be in the best interests of our country if they did so professionally, using the correct channel and procedures, and not seek to conduct a trial through the media.”

Zuma said he would not comment on “matters in the media environment relating to Sars that are being handled by law-enforcement agencies, as this may impact on their work and independence”.

However, it was unclear which agencies he was referring to, after Hawks spokesperson Hangwani Mulaudzi said it was not investigating Gordhan.

There was also no complaint against him.

He would not say what prompted the letter to Gordhan.

Zuma’s spokesperson did not respond to a query about which law-enforcement agencies the president had been referring.From © Independent On-line 2016. All rights reserved. 

Read more about: zuma | south africa | gwede mantashe | gordhan | anc

Related News

The signs are here that South Africa has reached its economic crossroad
03/12/2018 - 11:37
While South Africa attempts to shore up its own economy amid high inflation rates and a stuttering inherited financial system, the continent as a whole continues to grow. The big question, though, is whether South Africa will get left behind in terms of international investment if it doesn’t improve its financial situation, and how to avoid this.

Egypt lifts SA fresh goods ban as listeriosis threat subsides
20/09/2018 - 14:32
The department of agriculture, forestry and fisheries says Egypt's government has lifted its temporary suspension of fresh fruits and vegetable imports from South Africa, which stood as a precaution to prevent the spread of listeriosis there.

Foreword for Sowetan/Sunday World National Stokvel Survey
31/07/2018 - 13:17
Ubuntu is one of those uniquely African concepts that, for many, define what it means to be South African. A beautiful word that exemplifies a philosophy of caring for the welfare of every individual in a community – that special acknowledgement that “I am because we are.” Ubuntu is a spirit that ignites people to work together, for the benefit of all.

Japanese now upbeat about deals with SA
15/05/2018 - 09:42
Trade officials from Japan, who previously had felt sidelined under the Jacob Zuma administration, are in a more buoyant mood, believing that relations with SA have entered a new chapter.

ANC's ray of hope may boost retailers' prospects
14/02/2018 - 14:04
The outlook for consumer goods companies appears upbeat as a changing political landscape provides some impetus to a stuttering economy.