POLITICAL WEEK AHEAD: Pravin Gordhan set to testify before state-capture commission
The Zondo commission of inquiry continues this week with testimony by public enterprise minister Pravin Gordhan, who has been outspoken about state capture.
Gordhan will on Friday be the second cabinet minister to appear before the commission looking into malfeasance in which high-profile politicians, including former president Jacob Zuma, are implicated.
Last week, finance minister Nhlanhla Nene testified about his several interactions with the Guptas when he was deputy minister of finance and when he was appointed minister.
Zuma fired him and replaced him with MP Des van Rooyen after he refused to toe the line on projects such as the nuclear-build programme. Gordhan was finance minister in Zuma’s first term. In Zuma’s second term as state president, Gordhan served as co-operative governance and traditional affairs minister.
But in December 2015, after the president had removed Nene as finance minister, which sent the rand into free fall, he was forced to reconsider his decision and reappointed Gordhan as finance minister after four days.
A little more than a year later Zuma removed Gordhan, again weakening the rand.
After being fired from the cabinet, Gordhan joined parliament’s portfolio committee on public enterprises, which was investigating corruption and allegations of state capture within institutions such as Eskom. Gordhan returned to the executive in February as public enterprise minister after Zuma quit and President Cyril Ramaphosa was elected.
Former public enterprise minister Barbara Hogan is also set to testify before the commission on Wednesday. Zuma fired her in 2010.
Former ANC MP Vytjie Mentor told the commission she was offered Hogan’s job by the Guptas on condition that she terminated the SA Airways route to Mumbai, India.
Mentor refused and Malusi Gigaba was appointed public enterprise minister when Hogan was axed.
On Monday, Cosatu will hold its two day special central executive committee meeting.
The trade union federation will brief the media on the outcomes of the meeting on Thursday.
Parliamentary committees this week will discuss various annual reports.
On Tuesday, the ad hoc committee set up to probe the intervention in the North West will receive an update on the oversight visit to the province.