Mbeki Foundation: Mbeki didn’t introduce Guptas to Zuma

By Drum Digital
12 April 2016

The Thabo Mbeki Foundation has responded to allegations that the former President has links with the Gupta family.

By Ayanda Sitole

Speaking on ENCA, Mpho Masemola, a representative of the Ex-Political Prisoners Association, said Mbeki introduced the Gupta Family to President Zuma and made reference to discussions between the Ex-Political Prisoners Association and President Jacob Zuma.

In a statement the foundation it has “agonised about this matter” and has avoided responding to the allegations.

“Our honest and sustained attempt to avoid the gutter were nonetheless severely tested and strained by an ENCA news report which featured one Mpho Masemola, a representative of the Ex-Political Prisoners Association, yesterday.”

“He deploys innuendo in order to socialise accountability for an individual’s ethical judgement. For the record, President Thabo Mbeki did not at any point introduce the Gupta family to President Zuma.”

The Foundation says even if it were true that Mbeki introduced the Gupta family to Zuma, it would not have been done with improper motive and Mbeki cannot be blamed for anything that transpired between the two.

“For Mr. Masemola to suggest otherwise is in fact to accuse President Zuma of lacking the capacity to make his own ethical judgements.”

Mbeki has also been accused of having an unnamed member the Gupta family as an economic advisor during his term of president.

“No member of the Gupta family ever served in any economic advisory body during the time when President Mbeki served as Head of State. It is nevertheless true that Ajay Gupta‚ served on the International Marketing Council board.”

The Foundation says Ajay Gupta joined the board of the then IMC by agreement of the board on the recommendation of then Minister in The Presidency, Essop Pahad, who thought that he had the skills, knowledge and capacity to facilitate the work of the Council  and not because of his alleged relationship to Mbeki.

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