Gigaba was ‘incorrect’ to naturalise Guptas, committee finds

The Portfolio Committee on Home Affairs found that former Minister of Home Affairs Malusi Gigaba was “incorrect” to grant members of the Gupta family early naturalisation, but did not recommend any sanctions.

The committee recommended that criminal charges be laid against Gupta lieutenant Ashu Chawla and members of the Gupta family “relating to false information submitted in their early naturalisation applications”.

It also recommended that the matter be brought before the Zondo commission of inquiry into state capture.

Parliament instructed the committee to conduct an investigation into the early naturalisation of Ajay Gupta, his wife Shivani, mother Angoori, and sons Kamal Kant Singhala and Surya Kant Singhala. The naturalisation applications were made during Gigaba’s first stint in the home affairs portfolio.

The committee’s report was tabled on Thursday and distributed on Monday.

It is expected to go to the National Assembly for consideration and adoption this week.

Fraudulent

“The application for early naturalisation, approved by former Minister Gigaba, of Ajay Gupta’s family was incorrect,” read one of the committee’s observations in the report.

“The Ajay Gupta family early naturalisation application was fraudulent based, amongst others, on falsified social contribution documents to schools in the North West used by Mr Chawla on behalf of the family as support for their early naturalisation applications,” read the report.

The committee recommended that the Minister of Home Affairs should consider revoking the family’s citizenship due to the “misrepresentation of social contributions as well as improper procedure being followed as far as the renunciation of Indian nationality”.

“Mr Ashu Chawla’s fraudulent and corrupt activities related to both early naturalisation as well as facilitating illegal visas for Indian nationals should be considered by the minister as grounds for the revocation of Ashu Chawla’s South African citizenship in terms of section 8(1) of the Citizenship Act,” the report read further.

“The significant irregularities identified in this report’s observations regarding the citizenship and immigration services at the Department of Home Affairs in relation to the Gupta Family and associates, could amount to state capture and warrants that this report be referred by Parliament to the Zondo commission of inquiry into state capture for further investigation.”

‘No sway’

When Gigaba appeared before the committee’s inquiry in October 2018, he said he visited members of the Gupta family for “social cohesion” reasons, but insisted that they had no sway over him.

“During my tenure, I, at no stage, assisted the Gupta family, or any other private interest group, to capture the state,” Gigaba told the committee at a late-night meeting.

Despite the Constitutional Court upholding a ruling that he lied under oath, Gigaba is on the ANC’s list for the National Assembly in the upcoming elections. — News24

These are unprecedented times, and the role of media to tell and record the story of South Africa as it develops is more important than ever. But it comes at a cost. Advertisers are cancelling campaigns, and our live events have come to an abrupt halt. Our income has been slashed.

The Mail & Guardian is a proud news publisher with roots stretching back 35 years. We’ve survived thanks to the support of our readers, we will need you to help us get through this.

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

Jan Gerber
Jan Gerber
Journalist & photographer. Parliamentary reporter for News24
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

New energy mix on the cards

REI4P already has and will continue to yield thousands of employment opportunities

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