POLITICAL WEEK AHEAD: Duduzane and Guptas to appear before inquiry
The three Gupta brothers and Duduzane Zuma are scheduled this week to appear before the public inquiry into state capture being conducted by Parliament’s public enterprises committee.
Although the whereabouts of the four is unknown their attorney has assured the committee they will be present. This is despite warrants of arrest issued for the Guptas’ alleged involvement in the Estina dairy farm project and another brother, Ajay, believed to be wanted by the Hawks in connection with bribery allegations levelled by former deputy finance minister Mcebisi Jonas.
Home Affairs Minister Malusi Gigaba is also due to appear before the committee following his request last week to be allowed more time to prepare for the hearing.
He will answer to allegations that he facilitated state capture when he was minister of public enterprises and possibly questions about the naturalisation of the Gupta family, after his confusing public statements on the matter.
Meanwhile on Monday, the High Court in Pretoria will hand down judgment in the application by 13 Gupta-owned companies to interdict the Bank of Baroda from closing its South African office.
The bank informed the companies in July that it was cutting ties with them.
In October 2017, the court ordered the bank to continue providing banking services to the Gupta-linked companies to protect their employees.
Wednesday marks the end of the two-week notice period that National Prosecuting Authority head Shaun Abrahams said he would give lobby group the Council for the Advancement of the South African Constitution (Casac) before announcing his decision on whether former president Jacob Zuma should be prosecuted.
Casac has since approached the Constitutional Court urgently seeking to interdict Abrahams from making the announcement until after the court has made a ruling about his employment status.
In December the High Court in Pretoria set aside Abrahams’s appointment, stating that Zuma had been too conflicted to appoint the national director of public prosecutions at the time.
Casac wants the court to decide on its application by Thursday.
South African Revenue Service (SARS) commissioner Tom Moyane is expected to give evidence before the Ntsebeza inquiry.
Headed by advocate Dumisa Ntsebeza‚ the inquiry is aimed at determining if members of the South African Institute of Chartered Accountants (Saica) who had been employed by auditing firm KPMG breached the Saica code of conduct in the work the firm did for SARS and the Gupta family.
SARS will also appear before the finance committee in Parliament to address several issues such as claims that its head of business and individual tax, Jonas Makwakwa, has been cleared of misconduct and other allegations, as well as the KPMG report into the alleged rogue unit at the tax agency.
The government is set to announce the conditions of its decision to declare the drought in some parts of the country a national disaster.
On Tuesday, the interministerial task team on drought and water scarcity will brief the media on the action taken under section 27 of the Disaster Management Act.
President Cyril Ramaphosa will appear before the National Assembly on Wednesday for his first oral question-and-answer session since being appointed as president in February.
The DA has asked Ramaphosa to explain the government’s land expropriation plan, while the EFF wants the lid lifted on the total amount spent on Jacob Zuma’s legal costs since he took office in 2009.