The "ceasefire" is over.
Now the elections have come and gone sources close to the highest level of government have told YOU that Pravin Gordhan's days could be numbered.
Gordhan is said to have information that could mean the end of President Jacob Zuma’s political career, according to insiders from the treasury’s headquarters at 40 Church Square, Pretoria.
The minister of finance has made no secret of the fact that he and his team have been on a mission to eradicate corruption “on an almost industrial scale” in the past few months -- but the elections meant a ceasefire of sorts between him and those involved in so-called state capture.
"The hands-off Gordhan campaign worked well and his supporters in Gauteng responded in kind by accepting Zuma’s apology over Nkandla," another government insider said.
"But the election was a clear signal that power is being prised from Zuma and his cronies’ hands. The assault on Gordhan is a fight-back effort to reassert their influence.
“The risk for South Africa this time is around is much greater. Gordhan and his team have exposed corruption on an almost industrial scale over the past few months.
"So what’s at stake is bigger [than it was in May]. It's about illegal activities, not about mere political influence. It's a battle for survival,” a source said.
Gordhan and his colleagues are apparently preparing themselves for what's possibly the “final battle” in the fight against corruption and irregularities in the highest level of government.
Sources also say:
- The onslaught serves not only to retain access to state coffers but also to keep certain alleged corrupt elements within and outside the government out of prison.
- The political environment is being prepared for a cabinet reshuffle, which will see Gordhan removed from his position, but there are fears over how this will affect the economy.
- Deputy president Cyril Ramaphosa is actively associating with Gordhan, although it's uncertain what his strategy is.
This follows the revelation from the Daily Maverick on Tuesday afternoon that Gordhan and four former colleagues at the South African Revenue Service (SARS) were ordered by the Hawks to appear at the elite investigation team's head offices in Silverton, Pretoria, at 10 am on Thursday.
Ivan Pillay, Johann van Loggerenberg, Adrian Lackay and Andries “Skollie” van Rensburg were all involved with the SARS investigate unit (the so-called “rogue unit”) that fought illegal economic activity.
The unit is now being accused of a number of irregularities, although no evidence of wrongdoing has been put forward.
The Daily Maverick reports Gordhan and his former colleagues – all of whom left the SARS unit under a cloud with the appointment of the new commissioner, Tom Moyane – will be questioned with regards to the SARS investigation.
More details of the allegations will be released on Thursday.
This latest turn of events follows after months of silence after Gordhan resisted the Hawks earlier this year and issued a statement asking for the public’s support.
Gordhan was appointed minister of finance in December after a decision by President Zuma to replace then finance minister Nhlanhla Nene with unknown ANC MP Des van Rooyen.
Three days after the disastrous appointment Gordhan replaced Van Rooyen – after billions had already been lost on the stock exchange.