Mantashe to give evidence at the State Capture commission next week

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JOHANNESBURG, November 23 – South Africa’s governing African National Congress (ANC), led by its chairman Gwede Mantashe, will on Tuesday give evidence at the state capture commission of inquiry led by Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo.

Head of ANC presidency Zizi Kodwa said his party’s testimony will be presented in two phases, first by Mantashe and then by President Cyril Ramaphosa at a later stage.

“We met with the evidence leaders this morning [Friday]. We are ready for Tuesday, we will not run away from our responsibilities as the governing party. The second part of our submissions will be led by our president, who would have heard all the evidence that is still going to come,” he told reporters on the sidelines of the commission in Parktown, Johannesburg on Friday.

The inquiry has heard evidence from witnesses who put the fugitive Gupta family and their associates, former president Jacob Zuma and his son Duduzane at the centre of the state capture scandal.

The Gupta family made R6 billion through questionable State contracts and had planned to increase the rake-in to R8-billion, by laying the ground for more contracts by trying to capture National Treasury and have direct access to the public purse.

The ANC has been accusing being complacent and turning a blind as corruption and malfeasance deepened at the country’s state-owned enterprises.

Kodwa admitted that his party has been embarrassed by what has been unearthed as the commission so far.

“If there is a need for us to own up and acknowledge some of the responsibilities, we will do that at the end…led by the president [Ramaphosa]. Should there be a need for a submission in between the two phases, should there be new evidence…we will do everything in our power to help this commission.”

He lambasted the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) for attacking Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan outside the commission venue.

The red berets protested throughout the minister’s testimony, demanding that he resign. Gordhan was being used as a witness to attack the work of the commission and the ANC said Kodwa.

“There have been despicable campaigns led by other organisations…they used his testimony to attack the integrity of this commission, including victimising and intimidating other witnesses that are still to come to this commission. We think this is an element of what we call Trumpism [derived from US President Donald Trump’s perceived leadership style ]…Trumpism thrives on fear, hate, insults and race polarisation. We must unite all South Africans, black and white, to defeat Trumpism,” he said.

The commission will resume Friday afternoon to hear evidence by National Treasury director-general Dondo Mogajane. His predecessor Lungisa Fuzile testified over two days this week.

– African News Agency (ANA)