DA targets Brown, Muthambi, Van Rooyen in #GuptaLeaks charges

2017-06-12 17:56

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Cape Town - The number of criminal charges the Democratic Alliance is laying against the executive is growing as fast as new revelations emerge from the so-called GuptaLeaks.

Three ministers: Faith Muthambi, Lynne Brown and Des van Rooyen, and two officials, Dan Mantsha and Bruce Koloane, are the next in line, DA chief whip John Steenhuisen and national spokesperson Phumzile van Damme announced on Monday morning in Parliament.

SPECIAL REPORT: #GuptaLeaks

According to the DA, then-minister of communications, Muthambi forwarded a presidential proclamation detailing her powers to the Guptas and their associates before this proclamation was even signed by the President.

She also sent them confidential information on Cabinet meetings.

Leaked emails show that the Gupta family and their associates had easy access to confidential internal memos sent to the Minister of Public Enterprises Lynne Brown in which the department expresses uneasiness about the Denel and VR Laser Asia joint venture.

Confidential emails

Special advisers during Van Rooyen's three-day tenure as Minister of Finance, Ian Whitley and Mohamed Bobat, sent Treasury documents on to Gupta associates such as Eric Wood and Salim Essa.

The head of Denel Dan Mantsha reportedly forwarded confidential emails between Denel and the State Security Agency to the Gupta family and/or associates.

In February 2013, while he was chief of state protocol in the department of international relations and co-operation, Koloane sent Ashu Chawla, an associate of the Gupta family, operational information with regard to the Waterkloof Airforce Base for the months of March and April 2013.

Van Damme said through these actions Muthambi, Brown, Van Rooyen, Whitley, Bobat and Mantsha may have committed offences in terms of sections 3 and 4 of the Protection of Information Act, Act 84 of 1982, whereas Koloane and others may have committed offences in terms of the National Key Points Act, Act 102 of 1980.

These offences are punishable by up to 20 years in prison.

On Friday, June 9, Van Damme and DA spokesperson on transport Manny de Freitas laid charges of corruption against deputy finance minister Sfiso Buthelezi, for allegedly having benefited from tenders awarded to passenger rail agency Prasa when he was still its board chairperson.

Buthelezi denied these allegations.

The week before DA leader Mmusi Maimane laid charges against President Jacob Zuma and the Guptas.

Gupta-sponsored trip

Van Damme said they requested an update from the police on these charges on Friday, which they haven't received yet.

Van Damme also laid a charge with Parliament's ethics committee, relating to a Gupta-sponsored trip to Dubai for Communications Minister Ayanda Dlodlo.

Dlodlo admitted that she went on the trip and that she did not declare it.

Meanwhile, the DA is also hopeful that multiparty consensus can be reached on its proposed parliamentary ad hoc committee on state capture.

Steenhuisen said the motion will be discussed during Wednesday's chief whips forum at Parliament.

The motion calls for an ad hoc committee to be established to investigate evidence of "undue influence by certain individuals over the exercise of executive authority in South Africa", with "certain individuals" referring to the Guptas.

The committee should have wide powers, including the ability to subpoena Zuma.

"It has become clear that a sweeping investigation into state capture is required and Parliament, empowered by section 55 of the Constitution to oversee the exercise of executive authority, is the best place to undertake it," said Steenhuisen.

"I think all parties are on the surface concerned about state capture," said Steenhuisen.

"It would be great if this motion could pass with full consensus of the house."

He was also concerned that the Public Protector and National Prosecuting Authority are seemingly not acting on the revelations of the GuptaLeaks.

Read more on:    da  |  anc  |  ayanda dlodlo  |  faith muthambi  |  gupta family  |  des van rooyen  |  lynne brown  |  cape town  |  state capture  |  politics  |  gupta emails  |  gupta leaks

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