Five parting shots from Gordhan at the Zondo commission

JOHANNESBURG, SOUTH AFRICA NOVEMBER 12: Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan at ZondoÂ?s commission of inquiry into state capture on November 12, 2018 in Johannesburg, South Africa. Testifying at the inquiry, former public enterprises minister Barbara Hogan revealed that the ANC and its alliance partner ANCYL, attacked her as they pushed for the beleaguered Simphiwe Gama to be appointed Transnet CEO. (Photo by Gallo Images / Business Day / Alon Skuy)
JOHANNESBURG, SOUTH AFRICA NOVEMBER 12: Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan at ZondoÂ?s commission of inquiry into state capture on November 12, 2018 in Johannesburg, South Africa. Testifying at the inquiry, former public enterprises minister Barbara Hogan revealed that the ANC and its alliance partner ANCYL, attacked her as they pushed for the beleaguered Simphiwe Gama to be appointed Transnet CEO. (Photo by Gallo Images / Business Day / Alon Skuy)

Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan rounded up his evidence at the judicial commission of inquiry into state capture chaired by deputy chief justice Raymond Zondo on Wednesday.

By the time he concluded, he was accused of unduly benefiting as a minister from business deals, including through his daughter’s business interests.

Here's how his testimony to the commission ended.

'Recapturing institutions'

While his political nemeses spoke of state capture and undue benefit, the minister himself told Zondo that his number one priority was ensuring that the entities under his portfolios were no longer under the influence of state capture architects.

"We have about seven state-owned companies that report to us. The department is trying to collate as much information as we have access to so that we make it available to yourselves.

"In many institutions we are recapturing so that they perform the function that they were intended to do," said Gordhan.

They shout because you’re onto something?

According to Gordhan, most individuals who attacked his appearances before the Zondo commission had a vested interest in making sure that details of the state capture project did not come to light.

"Much of the public outcry we see arises from the fact that many would not like to see this commission go to deeply into the affairs of Eskom and the individuals that were involved in the state capture process itself," Gordhan said.

Low swinging axes

Gordhan summarised his account of his time as minister of finance at the height of the state capture project by saying that he and other National Treasury officials at the time were facing intimidation and threats, but ultimately refused to quit.

Family business

Gordhan denied allegations by the Economic Freedom Fighters that that his daughter unduly benefited from government contracts through her business interests.

Gordhan said his daughter Anisha joined Investec Bank's private equity division in 2007 and resigned a decade later.

He said it was common for financial services institutions invest their own or third-party capital in emerging businesses. 

The private equity division at Investec invested in privately held companies on behalf of Investec Bank Limited and the Bank was the owner of the shares, not his daughter, Gordhan said.

Politics of destruction

Gordhan dealt a pointed blow to those who criticised his evidence before the committee, saying that those who were opposed would not think twice about attacking the committee and its other witnesses.

"All sorts of new alliances are being drawn partly to attack this process and the revelations it will bring forth, and to assist in the elections coming in 2019. Some of these people have aspirations that they will be president or deputy president. When you don’t have any principles to back this up, then anything goes," Gordhan said.

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