Shares, Blue Label whisky and smartphones among gifts MPs declare
A miniature SAA display aircraft, wine, smartphones and holdings in a funeral parlour are among gifts and commercial interests MPs declared in the latest register of members’ interests, which records parliamentarians’ financial interests and gifts in a bid to promote transparency and curb corruption.
MPs and ministers must declare their interests including gifts worth R500 or more, properties, pensions and shares. This is among the measures to manage conflicts of interest.
In his submissions for the 2021 register published in parliament this week, public enterprises minister Pravin Gordhan disclosed that he received a small display SAA aircraft worth R400 from John Lamola, chairs of the carrier’s interim board.
Gordhan has been a defender of efforts to revive SAA despite opposition by some cabinet colleagues and opposition parties. The state has already introduced a strategic equity partner into SAA, but Gordhan and finance minister Enoch Godongwana disagreed openly about processes followed that led to offloading of 51% of the airline to private consortium Takatso.
Gordhan, who disclosed previously that he holds shares in more than 40 companies, including Sasol, Glencore, Naspers and Shoprite, also stated in the latest register that he holds shares in entities including banks, retailers, tobacco players, health-care providers, telecommunications providers and companies operating in the industrial metals and mining space. He said that his broker chose and handled his portfolio.
Co-operative governance and traditional affairs minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, who became the face of government’s much criticised Covid-19 lockdown regulations that led to the demise of many companies, declared that she holds 49 Sasol shares valued at R10,630, and 728 Sanlam shares worth R45,201.
Deputy President David Mabuza, who is leader of government business, said that he holds directorship/partnership position in five companies all in retail: Nelesco Pty; Middleground Trading; Above Average 44; Above Average 45; and Fastrak Trading 329. His assets included a R6m property in Barberton, and another in Mbombela valued at R800,000.
Deputy finance minister David Masondo declared that he received a cellphone from Huawei SA valued at about R14,000 and a bottle of red wine from Stellies Hive worth R305.
Communications and digital technologies minister Khumbudzo Ntshavheni said she had received a Galaxy Note 20 Ultra worth R29,000 and a smart watch valued at R6,000 from Telkom.
A company know as Platinum Distributors gave employment and labour minister Thulas Nxesi, a high ranking SA Communist Party official, a bottle of Jonnie Walker Blue Label whisky worth R2,400 and red wine valued at R1,300.
ANC deputy chief whip Doris Dlakude declared she is a director of undertakers Dlakude Funerals and owns two sugar-cane farms.
ANC MP and former North West premier Supra Mahumapelo said he was invested in RSA Gold Coins with a nominal value of about R220,000, and Kruger Rands worth about R80,000.
Boyce Maneli who chairs parliament’s communications committee, said he holds 20 ordinary MTN shares of unknown value and 20 shares in “Media 24, [of] unknown value”.
DA chief whip Natasha Mazzone declared a free monthly hair treatment from Palladium Hair worth R2,000.
DA leader John Steenhuisen did not have much to declare, besides a R500 lunch and a R400 orchid plant, both from the Taiwanese government.
Parliament’s ethics committee said in a statement it is hopeful that work to develop and maintain public trust and confidence in public representatives, and to protect the integrity of the legislature will be enforced and promoted by the release of the latest 827-page register.
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