Gigaba admits: I celebrated Diwali with the Guptas

Pretoria – New Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba says he has met the Gupta family, but that they have no influence on the decisions he takes.

Gigaba was speaking at a press briefing following Standard & Poor’s (S&P's) decision to downgrade South Africa’s credit rating to junk status.

It was revealed on Fin24 that Gigaba’s new advisers at Treasury have controversial backgrounds, with one having alleged links to the Guptas.

FIRST ON FIN24: Gigaba brings controversial advisers to Treasury

Responding to a question by Fin24 on his relationship with the Gupta family, Gigaba said that he has no relationship with them.

“As I meet many other business people, it does not mean I have a relationship with them,” he said. “Meeting someone does not mean they have an impact on your decisions. Ultimately I take my own decisions.”

He said that he has visited the family, and celebrated Diwali with them, as he has celebrated other religious events hosted by other people at their homes.

“But these things do not impact on my ability to take decisions,” he reiterated.

In court papers this year, the Oppenheimers accused Gigaba of being influenced by the Guptas over their luxury international airport terminal in Johannesburg, Fireblade. It’s an allegation Gigaba denied in court. 

READ MORE ON HUFFINGTON POST: Gigaba Takes On The Oppenheimers Over Luxury Joburg Airport Terminal, Denies Gupta Influence

The South African Communist Party believes Gigaba was selected solely to do the Gupta family’s bidding at the Treasury.

"The Guptas have almost, now with the removal of [Finance Minister] Pravin Gordhan, ensured that they have unfettered access to the resources at Treasury," SACP second deputy general secretary Solly Mapaila said on Friday.

The Guptas have close ties to President Jacob Zuma. They have been accused of having undue influence over his appointment of ministers and the running of state-owned enterprises.

Save SA also said Zuma’s reshuffle was a Gupta coup, especially as it resulted in the removal of former finance minister Pravin Gordhan and his deputy Mcebisi Jonas.

Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba addressing media at National Treasury in Pretoria on Tuesday. (Photo: AFP).

Read Fin24's top stories trending on Twitter:


We live in a world where facts and fiction get blurred
In times of uncertainty you need journalism you can trust. For 14 free days, you can have access to a world of in-depth analyses, investigative journalism, top opinions and a range of features. Journalism strengthens democracy. Invest in the future today. Thereafter you will be billed R75 per month. You can cancel anytime and if you cancel within 14 days you won't be billed. 
Subscribe to News24
Rand - Dollar
17.63
+1.2%
Rand - Pound
20.23
-0.2%
Rand - Euro
17.61
-0.5%
Rand - Aus dollar
11.47
+1.3%
Rand - Yen
0.12
+0.8%
Gold
1,726.04
+1.5%
Silver
21.05
+1.6%
Palladium
2,321.00
+4.3%
Platinum
934.50
+3.3%
Brent Crude
88.86
+4.2%
Top 40
59,840
+3.3%
All Share
66,313
+3.2%
Resource 10
64,568
+4.5%
Industrial 25
80,073
+3.2%
Financial 15
14,053
+1.7%
All JSE data delayed by at least 15 minutes Iress logo
Company Snapshot
Editorial feedback and complaints

Contact the public editor with feedback for our journalists, complaints, queries or suggestions about articles on News24.

LEARN MORE
Government tenders

Find public sector tender opportunities in South Africa here.

Government tenders
This portal provides access to information on all tenders made by all public sector organisations in all spheres of government.
Browse tenders