Mosebenzi Zwane, South Africa’s controversial minister of mineral resources, still insists that the statement about a possible investigation against banks that broke ties with the Guptas was not sent out by him alone.
This was despite the fact that President Jacob Zuma and the ANC distanced themselves from the statement, shortly after Zwane issued it on September 1.
On Tuesday, in reply to a parliamentary question, Zwane claimed that the statement wasn’t issued in his personal capacity, but in his capacity as chairperson of an inter-ministerial committee
“On April 13, Cabinet established an inter-ministerial committee to consider allegations that certain banks and other financial institutions acted unilaterally and allegedly in collusion, when they closed bank accounts and terminated contractual relationships with Oakbay Investments [the Guptas’ company],” Zwane replied.
“The minister recorded recommendations made to Cabinet by the inter-ministerial committee as well as the related resolutions taken by Cabinet at its meetings of July 6 and August 31 respectively.
“The inter-ministerial committee made five recommendations to Cabinet. Four of the recommendations were approved by Cabinet and one was referred to the president for further consideration as it was not within the purview of Cabinet to take a decision on the matter,” said Zwane.
During Zuma’s most recent oral question-and-answer session in Parliament a few weeks ago, he said he was still deciding what steps should be taken against Zwane. He also distanced himself and Cabinet from Zwane’s statement,saying that Zwane was acting in his personal capacity.
Zwane’s conduct prompted calls for him to be fired.