Former Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan. File photo: Henk Kruger/African News Agency (ANA).
Former Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan. File photo: Henk Kruger/African News Agency (ANA).

Gordhan asks for extension in PP's 'rogue unit' investigation

By Zintle Mahlati Time of article published Apr 23, 2019

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Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan says the seven days deadline set by Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane for him to submit an affidavit is not enough and has asked for an extension. 

Gordhan said his lawyers were expecting a response on the matter on Monday. 

Mkhwebane is currently investigating a complaint laid by EFF deputy president Floyd Shivambu regarding the "rogue unit" that allegedly operated at Sars while Gordhan headed the revenue service. 

Gordhan said the seven days was not sufficient for him to supply an expansive affidavit regarding Mkhwebane's probe. 

"My legal team is dealing with that matter, the issue is you cannot have seven working days to deal with an extensive matter. We have asked for a postponement and I hope that we can get an answer on that," said Gordhan in an interview on Radio 702.

The minister said he supported the office of the Public Protector but raised suspicion about the motive behind Mkhwebane's probe. 

He said there seemed to be a group of individuals hellbent on fighting against his and others' efforts to fight state capture. 

"The reality is that those who are trying to fix the Eskom and the Transnet's and get the legacy of state capture out of our system, are confronted with a fightback. The question for the public is who directing this fightback? why is it that when are trying to clean up a country and get rid of corruption and corrupt elements then you are confronted with a sort of weapons," said Gordhan. 

Gordhan admitted that he like many all South Africans was legally bound to comply with Mkhwebane. 

"Legally we will do what we have to do to comply with the law. But we also have a moral duty that when things are being abused we need to stand up whether during Apartheid and now," said Gordhan. 

Mkhwebane's investigation into the rogue unit is a second matter involving Gordhan. 

The other investigation relates to former Sars official Ivan Pillay's pension payout. Gordhan was the finance minister at the time and Oupa Magashula was the Sars commissioner. 

The minister was subpoenaed in November last year to supply the Public Protector with an affidavit. Magashula was also subpoenaed.

Political Bureau

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