Two ministers have testimony delayed as Zondo state-capture inquiry postponed
Former and current public enterprises ministers, Barbara Hogan and Pravin Gordhan, will now testify in November
Former and current public enterprise ministers, Barbara Hogan and Pravin Gordhan, will only take the stand at commission of inquiry into state capture in November.
The commission’s legal team applied for a postponement on Wednesday morning and proceedings were adjourned by the commission’s chair, deputy chief justice Raymond Zondo, to November 12 when Hogan will testify.
Hogan was expected to give evidence about the events building up to former president Jacob Zuma’s 2010 cabinet reshuffle and her knowledge of the reasons she was fired. She was one of seven ministers removed during the first of Zuma’s 11 cabinet reshuffles.
Gordhan was axed as finance minister in March 2017, together with his then deputy Mcebisi Jonas. Jonas has already testified at the commission, saying the two were isolated and operated in a hostile political environment as allegations of state capture surfaced
Advocate Thandi Norman, who made the application on behalf of the legal team, said they only received Hogan’s final statement on Monday, and did not have sufficient time to give adequate notice in terms of the commission’s rules to those who were implicated in her testimony.
She also said the legal team had not yet received Gordhan’s final statement, but expected to receive it on Thursday. Gordhan was initially scheduled to testify on Friday, but he will now be heard on November 15.
In terms of the rules of the commission, implicated persons must be given two weeks notice and be furnished with the relevant portions of the statements in which they were implicated.
Daniel Mantsha, who acts for Zuma, who is implicated in Hogan’s testimony, raised issue with the fact that they were served with a notice based on an initial statement by Hogan months ago, but that they were only told on Monday that she would give testimony this week.
He said they did not know what the status of that first affidavit was. Norman then clarified that the final statement was based on the initial statement, which Hogan has now expanded on.
Zondo said the commission will ensure that implicated persons are dealt with fairly and that they will have a fair opportunity to give their versions before the commission, or explain their conduct when they act in a manner that is not acceptable.
He said it would ensure the final findings are seen as credible.