President Jacob Zuma has “full confidence” in Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan, the Presidency said in a statement on Thursday.
But he does not have the power to stop any investigations into any individuals, he added.
Below is the full statement issued by Zuma’s office:
“The Presidency has noted the concerns expressed by individuals and organisations in society about the reported investigation by the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (the Hawks) involving the Minister of Finance, Mr Pravin Gordhan as well as other former South African Revenue Services officials.
“President Jacob Zuma wishes to express his full support and confidence in the Minister of Finance and emphasises the fact that the Minister has not been found guilty of any wrongdoing.
“The Presidency wishes to also emphasise that President Zuma does not have powers to stop any investigations into any individual/s. Our constitutional democracy, the strength of our state institutions and the effectiveness of our courts in upholding and protecting rights is our guarantee of justice and fairness.
“The negative effect of these matters on our economy, personal pressure on the individuals affected as well as the heads of institutions, however disturbing, cannot be cause for the President to intervene unconstitutionally.
“The broader speculation linking these investigations to government and state-owned institutions are equally unhelpful and they are also false and misleading.” – News24