The ANC’s desire to keep at a safe distance from the state-capture inquiry came to an abrupt end on Monday. Testimony at the Zondo commission incriminated two of its top officials as well as three serving members of the national executive committee (NEC) in trying to bully the country’s biggest bank into reopening the Gupta family’s accounts in 2016. Mosebenzi Zwane, one of the key players in Jacob Zuma’s scandal-plagued administration, even threatened to change the country’s banking laws, according to Ian Sinton, who was at the time the chief compliance officer at the bank. Zwane, who was mineral resources minister and had no role regulating the financial sector, made the threat to Standard Bank CEO Sim Tshabalala, according to Sinton.

The commission is looking into allegations of massive corruption and fraud in the public sector during Zuma’s presidency. Much of the controversy centres on the Gupta family, friends of Zuma, who were also in business with his son, and allegati...

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