FIC challenge will show Gigaba’s strings

NEWS ANALYSIS
The Guptas brought an application to the Pretoria high court to set aside the decision to issue a contentious Financial Intelligence Centre (FIC) certificate detailing 72 reports of suspicious Gupta transactions amounting to R6.8-billion.

It was struck from the court record this week by Judge President Dunstan Mlambo, who said it had no relevance to the legal question before the court.

Outgoing finance minister Pravin Gordhan presented the certificate in his court papers in an attempt to show the “depth and scope” of the Gupta problem he had to deal with.

But he was criticised for using it for political reasons.

This will be one of the challenges Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba will inherit. He will have to choose either to oppose the application, abide by the court’s decision, or to support the application.

The Guptas argue that FIC director Murray Michell did not have the power to issue it, and they want to know why he did. They claim his decision was unlawful, irrational and grossly unfair.

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Pauli van Wyk
Pauli van Wyk is a Scorpio investigative journalist. She writes about the justice cluster, state-owned companies, state politics and the inescapable collision course they're on. Pauli cut her teeth at Media24. She became a journo at Beeld, was trained by the amaBhungane Centre for Investigative Journalism and joined Mail & Guardian's investigative team before becoming a member of Scorpio.

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