ANC general secretary Gwede Mantashe yesterday put his weight behind embattled former Transnet freight rail chief executive Siyabonga Gama, saying he got "a raw deal" after he was found guilty of mismanagement.
An independent chairperson in an internal disciplinary hearing last week found Gama guilty of allocating a contract to refurbish 50 locomotives to Sibanye Trade Services, which allegedly lacked experience in renovation.
He was also charged with exceeding his authority by signing off a R19million with a security firm with links to Communications Minister Siphiwe Nyanda.
Mantashe said Gama had proven management skills and his track record spoke for itself.
"He is a capable black manager who turned around Portnet and Spoornet, that is all I know about him. If you determine his capabilities on any other criterion I have problems with those issues."
Mantashe said he did not know Gama personally but knew of his managerial skills and regarded him a capable manager.