/ 3 November 2016

Guptas will not challenge state capture report, will work with commission of inquiry

The Gupta family will not challenge former public protector Thuli Madonsela’s state capture report and welcomes the idea of a commission of inquiry, their lawyer Gert van der Merwe said on Thursday morning.

Madonsela’s damning report, titled State of Capture, was released just before 4pm on Wednesday afternoon.

Van der Merwe said the Gupta family is “looking forward” to submitting their side to an impartial judge.

“We welcome Madonsela’s report. She did good work. It is a body of evidence she collected. It makes no findings against my clients, for good reason. She rightly steered away from making findings against my clients, she did not hear our version.

“Now we look forward to work with a judge on this, we won’t have to struggle with someone inexperienced in law of evidence.

“I’ve seen Vytjie Mentor’s affidavit. It is questionable. There are pieces scratched out, pieces rewritten, and some scratched out again. I’m looking forward to questioning it. And so we will question every detail, Mcebisi Jonas’ version, the Eskom deals, everything.”

State of Capture differed from Madonsela’s usual reports: It made no recommendations and listed no findings, only “observations”. The wording was carefully crafted, with words used such as “seemingly”, “might be” and “alleged”.

Nonetheless, the body of evidence Madonsela managed to collect implicated President Jacob Zuma and his son Duduzane, Eskom chief executive Brian Molefe, the Gupta brothers, especially Ajay Gupta, minister of public enterprises Lynne Brown, former minister of finance Des van Rooyen and minister of mineral resources Mosebenzi Zwane in serious wrongdoing.