Govt has become Zuma's 'personal fiefdom' - EFF

By Drum Digital
22 April 2016

Cabinet's intervention in the business and private affairs of the Gupta family's Oakbay Investments shows that government has become President Jacob Zuma's "personal fiefdom", the Economic Freedom Fighters said on Friday.

Johannesburg - Cabinet's intervention in the business and private affairs of the Gupta family's Oakbay Investments shows that government has become President Jacob Zuma's "personal fiefdom", the Economic Freedom Fighters said on Friday.

Recently a number of financial institutions - including KPMG, the top four banks and Oakbay’s JSE sponsor Sasfin Capital - said they were cutting ties with Oakbay or had given notice to do so.

Minister in the Presidency Jeff Radebe said in a statement on Thursday that Mineral Resources Minister Mosebenzi Zwane, Labour Minister Mildred Oliphant and Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan would meet with the banks to find out why they didn't want to have the Gupta family-owned Oakbay Investments as their client.

"What this means is that the South African government has deployed its ministers to go and resolve private business problems of the Gupta family, a family whom Mr. Zuma has confirmed are his friends ," EFF spokesperson Mbuyiseni Ndlozi said in a statement.

"The South African government is being reduced into a personal fiefdom where a president reduces institutions of the state and Cabinet ministers into defending his personal and private interests."

He said workers were often facing challenges, such as in mining.

"When a former mineral resources minister attempted to resolve a five-month strike which has direct economic implications, he was publicly cautioned by the ruling party not to interfere in labour disputes despite the reality that this affected thousands of workers," Ndlozi claimed.

"Now that the private interests of Zuma family are directly affected, key Cabinet ministers are rerouted to deal with private affairs of the Zupta phenomenon..."

Ndlozi said existing legislation and rules that governed banks and other financial institutions placed an obligation on them to disassociate from, and report, all forms of financial crimes and impropriety by their customers.

"If this is the basis upon which the banks disengaged with the Guptas, it should be welcomed...," he said.

"The EFF rejects Cabinet's narrow intervention into private affairs of the Gupta family and instead calls for strengthening of laws that deal with financial crimes."

Source: News24

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