We are sorry, say the Guptas

"In light of what happened … the family would like to issue a general apology to all affected, including the South African and Indian governments, the local authorities, the South African public and especially our guests." Atul Gupta said in a statement issued on Saturday. The Gupta saga: More coverage The Gupta wedding in pictures Pick: Your friends or your country, Zuma Guptas offer to co-operate with investigators Ministers – and Guptas – dodge plane blame He said his family was "simply trying to give [their] daughter … a memorable wedding on South African soil".

"We also regret any incidents at the Sun City venue of which the family was unaware. The allegations of racism regarding the staff are definitely untrue. If there was an isolated incident involving any of our guest [we apologise] unreservedly to any party affected," said Gupta.

The Gupta's had used a national key point, the Waterkloof Air Force Base in Pretoria, to land a jet ferrying over 200 hundred guests for the wedding last week.

It was also reported on Saturday that blue-light vehicles were used to escort guests to Sun City, North West, where the wedding took place.

Nine officers arrested
Nine officers from the Tshwane Metro Police Department were arrested after they allegedly escorted Gupta family wedding guests to Sun City, the city's chief of metro police said.

"Our members have been arrested," said Superintendent Isaac Mahamba in a telephone interview.

Mahamba said the nine allegedly formed a contingent that used private vehicles illegally fitted with police blue lights, sirens and false number plates.

Several government departments have denied giving clearance for the jet to land at the base.

The departments have launched separate investigations into the matter.

Justice Minister Jeff Radebe announced in a televised broadcast on Friday that five high ranking officials and military personnel had been suspended over the unauthorised landing.

The suspended officials were: Chief of State Protocol: Ambassador Bruce Koloane, Officer Commanding Air Force Command post: Brig-Gen L Lombard, Officer Commanding Air Force Base: Brig-Gen TS Madumane; Movement Control Officer: Lt-Col C Anderson and SA Police Service Operational Response Services Gauteng Province: Maj-Gen Phumza Gela. – Sapa

PW Botha wagged his finger and banned us in 1988 but we stood firm. We built a reputation for fearless journalism, then, and now. Through these last 35 years, the Mail & Guardian has always been on the right side of history.

These days, we are on the trail of the merry band of corporates and politicians robbing South Africa of its own potential.

To help us ensure another 35 future years of fiercely independent journalism, please subscribe.

Sapa
Guest Author
Advertisting

Tension over who’s boss of courts

In a letter, Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng questions whether Justice Minister Ronald Lamola has acted constitutionally

SABC sued over ‘bad’ clip of Ramaphosa

A senior employee at the public broadcaster wants compensation for claims of ‘sabotage’

Soundtrack to a pandemic: Africa’s best coronavirus songs

Drawing on lessons from Ebola, African artists are using music to convey public health messaging. And they are doing it in style

In East Africa, the locusts are coming back for more

In February the devastating locust swarms were the biggest seen in East Africa for 70 years. Now they’re even bigger

Press Releases

The online value of executive education in a Covid-19 world

Executive education courses further develop the skills of leaders in the workplace

Sisa Ntshona urges everyone to stay home, and consider travelling later

Sisa Ntshona has urged everyone to limit their movements in line with government’s request

SAB Zenzele’s special AGM postponed until further notice

An arrangement has been announced for shareholders and retailers to receive a 77.5% cash payout

20th Edition of the National Teaching Awards

Teachers are seldom recognised but they are indispensable to the country's education system

Awards affirm the vital work that teachers do

Government is committed to empowering South Africa’s teachers with skills, knowledge and techniques for a changing world

SAB Zenzele special AGM rescheduled to March 25 2020

New voting arrangements are being made to safeguard the health of shareholders

Dimension Data launches Saturday School in PE

The Gauteng Saturday School has produced a number of success stories