Get more Mail & Guardian
Subscribe or Login

City Press runs Maharaj’s Scorpions transcripts

Details of presidency spokesperson Mac Maharaj’s 2003 interview with the Scorpions were published on the front page of the City Press on Sunday.

The newspaper printed the contents of the then transport minister’s grilling by the Scorpions, with an editorial note pointing out that it had already published the information in 2007.

The Mail & Guardian had wanted to publish information which it claimed proved that Maharaj lied in the Scorpions inquiry last week but, after receiving threats of legal action from Maharaj, black blocks were printed over the controversial text.

“We wanted to combine information from the section 28 interview with the comprehensive documentation published last week to show Mac Maharaj lied that his and his wife’s receipt of money was innocent,” said M&G editor-in-chief Nic Dawes.

“We’ve said all along this information was in the public domain, which we included in our letter to the National Prosecuting Authority. This just highlights the absurdity of the criminal investigation by the Hawks currently under way into the M&G.”

Despite this, Maharaj laid charges against the M&G and journalists Sam Sole and Stefaans Brümmer, claiming that possession of the documents — part of a section 28 inquiry under the National Prosecuting Authority Act — was illegal.

The City Press said it had chosen to print the controversial text as it was in the public interest, and that confidentiality was a moot point as the facts had already been published years ago.

The reports on the inquiry raised questions relating to Maharaj’s time as transport minister from 1994 to 1999, when he allegedly received kickbacks from French arms and technology company Thales International.

On Thursday Maharaj said: “it now appears to me that the real target of this ‘renewed’ interest is not Mac Maharaj but President Zuma and his administration”.

“Unfortunately, the matter is now with the police and at this stage I prefer to leave matters there.” — Sapa

Subscribe to the M&G

Thanks for enjoying the Mail & Guardian, we’re proud of our 36 year history, throughout which we have delivered to readers the most important, unbiased stories in South Africa. Good journalism costs, though, and right from our very first edition we’ve relied on reader subscriptions to protect our independence.

Digital subscribers get access to all of our award-winning journalism, including premium features, as well as exclusive events, newsletters, webinars and the cryptic crossword. Click here to find out how to join them.

Related stories

WELCOME TO YOUR M&G

If you’re reading this, you clearly have great taste

If you haven’t already, you can subscribe to the Mail & Guardian for less than the cost of a cup of coffee a week, and get more great reads.

Already a subscriber? Sign in here

Advertising

Subscribers only

Cape Flats gangsters, children die in fight over turf

Extortion rackets are part of a corrupt system that includes religious leaders, councillors, police and syndicates

Tobacco farmers want the taxman to do more to control...

The Black Tobacco Farmers’ Association the introduction of a minimum price level for cigarettes

More top stories

South Africa moves back to adjusted level 3, schools to...

Vaccination capacity to be increased as the government announces financial support measures for those affected by Covid-19 restrictions and the recent civil unrest

Water sector to clean up its act

The Blue and Green Drop programmes are being relaunched to rebuild SA’s often poorly maintained and ‘looted’ water systems

Afforestation can hinder fight against global warming if done wrong,...

A simplistic approach to tree restoration without not properly accounting for the complexities of plant and atmosphere interactions can cause problems

Carbon tax to align to UN treaties

Amendments to offset regulations published on 8 July give clarity on big emitters carrying old carbon credits to a new framework
Advertising

press releases

Loading latest Press Releases…
×