Govt officials explain Dubai visits

2016-04-13 16:00
Supra Mahamupelo (Genevieve Quintal, News24)

Supra Mahamupelo (Genevieve Quintal, News24)

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Johannesburg - North West premier and President Jacob Zuma ally Supra Mahumapelo is spending this week in Dubai to seek investment for the province.

Deputy Trade and Industry Minister Mzwandile Masina was also in Dubai this week, attending the Annual Investor Meeting, where he received two "investor awards" on behalf of South Africa, the department, and InvestSA.

Mahumapelo's office said he was in Dubai in a bid to grow the province's economy.

"The economic investment meeting in Dubai, which is currently under way, will explore economic opportunities available in Dubai for the North West and vice versa," spokesperson Brian Setswambung said in response to e-mailed questions by News24.

Mahumapelo was being accompanied by agriculture, culture and tourism MECs Manketsi Tlhape and Desbo Mohono, and finance MEC Wendy Nelson.

Before flying to Dubai, the North West delegation visited China.

Guptas

The Gupta family reportedly left for Dubai following weeks of what they called sustained political attacks on them. They had been accused of offering Cabinet positions and interfering with the running of government.

They had ties with Zuma, his family, and other ANC leaders.

Last month, EFF leader Julius Malema claimed Zuma visited the United Arab Emirates to drop off R6 billion belonging to the Guptas. He did not provide any evidence to back his claim.

At the time, the Presidency said Zuma went to the UAE to consolidate political and economic ties and promote South Africa as a tourism destination.

Zuma was accompanied by ministers of International Relations, Maite Nkoana-Mashabane; Trade and Industry, Rob Davies; State Security, David Mahlobo; Police, Nathi Nhleko; and Home Affairs, Malusi Gigaba.

Zuma's visit to the UAE followed a two-day state visit to Saudi Arabia.

Questions had also been raised about Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs Minister Des van Rooyen’s trip to Dubai in December.

The Sunday Times reported that some government officials – including Van Rooyen – travelled to Dubai last year, when the Guptas were there.

His spokesperson Tsakani Baloyi said it was a one-day trip on private business.

Read more on:    anc  |  jacob zuma  |  gupta family  |  supra mahumapelo
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