Where is evidence of Gupta influence? - Van Rooyen

2016-03-15 11:21
Minister Des van Rooyen

Minister Des van Rooyen

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Johannesburg - Those claiming that the politically connected Gupta family are influencing Cabinet appointments must come forward with evidence, Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs Minister Des van Rooyen said on Tuesday.

"We have been saying we are a democratic country, a constitutional democracy for that matter, a democracy that can't be chopped and changed when it suits an individual," he told News24 on the sidelines of the Independent Municipal and Allied Trade Union conference in Boksburg, east of Johannesburg.

"Our conduct as public representatives is guided by the provisions of our Constitution and it's very clear we are expected to engage everyone, everyone, without exception, to take South Africa forward."

Van Rooyen said he was not sure why "all of a sudden" certain families were being singled out "as families which must not be engaged with".

‘We have been engaging with Guptas’

He said government had been engaging various wealthy families and even during exile the ANC engaged with business people as a way of showing its commitment to working with everyone to take South Africa forward.

"We have been engaging with them as [the] government of the day.

"So it's very unfortunate that all of a sudden some business people are singled out on their relationship with government as if government is not supposed to create relationships with business people. I find that to be very unfortunate," Van Rooyen said.

The Gupta family, which is said to have strong ties with President Jacob Zuma, his family and other ANC leaders, has been accused of offering top ministerial jobs.

At the weekend, reports emerged that they had offered the job of finance minister to deputy minister Mcebisi Jonas, two weeks before Nene was removed and replaced with Van Rooyen.
Jonas reportedly turned down the job.

Secret meetings

The Sunday Times reported that the president's son Duduzane was also present at the meeting held at a Sandton hotel in November. The newspaper further alleged that Jonas was again offered this position a few days later by ANC deputy secretary general Jessie Duarte.

The Gupta family has denied that they met with Jonas.

Shortly after Van Rooyen was appointed finance minister he was replaced by Pravin Gordhan. The move to replace Nene was met with public outcry and saw the rand plummet. Van Rooyen was then moved to the Cogta portfolio.

Gordhan on Monday, said he had no personal knowledge of the meeting between Jonas and the Gupta family, but would not say if he would speak to his deputy about the allegations.

Rumours and gossip

The ANC said it would set up a meeting with Jonas to discuss the allegations.

At a national executive committee meeting to be held this weekend, the ANC is also expected to get a report back on a meeting the party's top six officials had with the Gupta family.

There have also been allegations that Sport Minister Fikile Mbalula heard from the Gupta family that he had been appointed minister.

Van Rooyen is also said to have ties to the well connected family.

After his appointment as finance minister in December, it was reported that Van Rooyen arrived at his new position as finance minister with two unnamed "advisors". The two were named as "Gupta allies" Mohamed Bobat and Ian Whitley.

Whitely was Duarte's son-in-law.

Read more on:    anc  |  pravin gordhan  |  nhlanha nene  |  jacob zuma  |  gupta family  |  des van rooyen  |  politics

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

Inside News24

Financial advisors – Do you need one and should you get one?

The good, the bad, and everything else you need to know when considering hiring a financial advisor.


Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.