ANC to explain bank lobbying
Party not on trial at Zondo inquiry, Magashule insists
The ANC is to give the Zondo commission its version of events, after testimony by the country’s big four banks sucked it into the centre of the state capture inquiry. The party is accused of acting on behalf of the controversial Gupta family.
Last month Standard Bank, Absa, FNB and Nedbank testified at the commission on what transpired when they took the decision to close the accounts of the Gupta family and its companies between February and December 2016.
The banks were called to separate meetings at the ANC’s Luthuli House headquarters by then secretary-general Gwede Mantashe, his deputy Jessie Duarte and head of the economic transformation subcommittee Enoch Godongwana. FNB was the only bank not to attend a meeting with the ANC officials.
On Monday Magashule, after a three-day meeting of the national executive committee (NEC), said the ANC would make a submission to the commission led by deputy chief justice Raymond Zondo. It was not clear if it would appear before the commission or make a written submission.
Magashule said the party would be guided by President Cyril Ramaphosa on the matter.
He said it was the ANC-led government which had set up the commission.
"We remain firm in our belief that the ANC is not on trial, but that this process is aimed at getting at the truth about this very painful part of our recent history," Magashule said.
"The ANC has stated its position and will go there and respond to issues raised by the banks. It is our own creation, we can’t run away …"
The inquiry was part of the recommendations made by former public protector Thuli Madonsela in 2016 after she had investigated state capture and the political and administrative influence of the Guptas, Former president Jacob Zuma tried to take the report on judicial review but was unsuccessful.
On the alleged plot to oust Ramaphosa, Magashule said the NEC agreed that the matter be discussed by the officials, who would then report back "with a view to lay this matter to rest".
The Sunday Times last month reported that Magashule, former North West premier Supra Mahumapelo, and others were meeting with Zuma to plot the removal of Ramaphosa.
Magashule has admitted to meeting Zuma but said there was no plot.
On Monday, he said he and Ramaphosa had a good working relationship. "Me and comrade Cyril Ramaphosa, we won’t allow any wedge drivers to come in between us, we will stay focused and we are going to work together and we will continue to work together."
At the Cosatu conference last month, Ramaphosa said of those alleged to have been involved in a plot that such actions were counterrevolutionary.