‘Guptas offered me Finance Minister position’ – Mcebisi Jonas

Deputy finance minister Mcebisi Jonas has confirmed that members of the Gupta family did offer him the job of finance minister.

In a statement released late on Wednesday afternoon Jonas said:  “Members of the Gupta family offered me the position of Minister of Finance to replace then Minister Nene. I rejected this out of hand. The basis of my rejection of their offer is that it makes a mockery of our hard earned democracy, the trust of our people and no one apart from the President of the Republic appoints ministers.” 

The statement comes after a report in the Sunday Times said Jonas had been offered the job by the Gupta family in November last year.  

Finance minister Nhlanhla Nene was axed from the post on the December 9 and replaced by little-known ANC MP Des Van Rooyen. President Jacob Zuma was forced to replace Van Rooyen, by appointing Praving Gordhan, a few days later after the Rand went into free-fall and there was an outcry by business and the wider public.

In the statement Jonas clarified that he had not had discussions with the deputy secretary general of the ANC, Jessie Duarte, about replacing Nene.  “I have hesitated to speak out publicly on this matter until now, but I feel it is no longer possible to remain quiet,” Jonas said  “Of primary concern to me is that this issue has a real danger of diverting attention away from the real and urgent challenges we face as a country.” 

The revelation comes at a time when there is a growing outcry, from within the ANC in particular, over the influence the Gupta family is believed to have over the Zuma administration. 

Former MP Vytjie Mentor added fuel to this fire earlier this week after she made allegations that Gupta representatives had offered her the post of minister of public enterprises after Barbara Hogan was removed from the post. After Jonas’s statement was released Mentor said on her Facebook page “Viva cde. Mcebisi Jonas! The truth shall set us free!”

Read more here: Deputy Minister of Finance Mcebisi Jonas’ statement

Follow @mailandguardian on Twitter for updates.

Advertisting

Unions slam move to cut wage bill

Cosatu rejects job losses and a wage freeze for public servants, calling this ‘a declaration of war’

Coronavirus: South Africa will evacuate citizens from Wuhan

The government is expected to evacuate citizens from Wuhan, where the coronavirus outbreak originated

Primedia CEO Essack leaves following internal battles

Omar Essack leaves the 702 and 94.7 owners after a protracted standoff with the board

‘We’re satisfied with SA’s land reform policy’— US Ambassador

Top US official is lobbying multinational firms to invest in South Africa

Press Releases

Over R400-m given to businesses since launch of three-minute overdraft

The 3-minute overdraft radically reduces the time it takes for businesses to have their working capital needs met

Tourism can push Africa onto a new path – minister

The continent is fast becoming a dynamic sought-after tourist destination

South Africa’s education system is broken and unequal, and must be fixed without further delay

The Amnesty International report found that the South African government continues to miss its own education upgrading targets

Business travel industry generates billions

Meetings Africa is ready to take advantage of this lucrative opportunity

Conferences connect people to ideas

The World Expo and Meetings Africa are all about stimulating innovation – and income

SAB Zenzele Kabili B-BBEE share scheme

New scheme to be launched following the biggest B-BBEE FMCG payout in South Africa’s history

Digging deep

Automation is unstoppable, but if we're strategic about its implementation, it presents major opportunities

TFSAs are the gymnasts of the retirement savings world

The idea is to get South Africans to save, but it's best to do your research first to find out if a TFSA is really suited to your needs