Gordhan deadline stands - Hawks

Johannesburg - The Hawks will not discuss issues pertaining to questions it has sent to Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan, but say that the Monday afternoon deadline for him to respond still stands.

"It is a matter which will be dealt with by the national [Hawks] head," spokesperson Brigadier Hangwani Mulaudzi said.

"He will take a decision and see what the way forward is. For now let the process unfold."

Letter

Mulaudzi said the letter sent to Gordhan was public knowledge and the deadline given to him to respond to 27 questions regarding a so-called "rogue unit" in the SA Revenue Service still stood.

Gordhan on Sunday said he had not received a second letter from the Hawks indicating a deadline for Monday.

“My attorneys have confirmed to me that no other letter has been received by their office," he said in a statement.

"I can also confirm that I am unaware of any 'new' letter."

Gordhan also criticised the special police unit and accused it of harassing him. Days before he delivered his Budget, the Hawks sent him a list of questions about the so-called rogue spy unit.

He was given a new deadline of Monday afternoon to answer the questions. The unit was apparently set up when Gordhan was Sars commissioner.

The Hawks wanted Gordhan to tell them what he knew about the unit.

Mulaudzi said the Hawks did not want to deal with the matter in the public domain.

"It's two different offices that must work diligently without us having to publish or bare ourselves naked in the public. It's the wrong move," he said.

Concern over spat

African National Congress's head of policy Jeff Radebe earlier on Monday said the ruling party was concerned that the spat between Gordhan and the Hawks was taking place in the public domain.

"As the ANC we prefer that these matters should be ventilated in the appropriate forums and not in the public domain," told reporters in Johannesburg.

He said there were forums within government where these issues should be addressed.

ANC spokesperson Zizi Kodwa added that the party was concerned that the issue was being run as a "public trial".

"There is correspondence between two officials and the next day it's on the front pages," he said.

"We don't understand what is the intention. We questioned it yesterday. What is the intention?

Things must be done professionally, said Kodwa.

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