Sexwale leaves Mvela for Cabinet

Staff Reporter and Sapa

Staff Reporter and Sapa

Human Settlements Minister Tokyo Sexwale confirmed yesterday that he would resign as executive chairman of the Mvelaphanda Group after his appointment to Cabinet.

Sexwale was expected to step down from Mvela to take up his full-time national legislature post. He is understood to have spent the last few months winding up his business affairs and placing many of his interests in a trust.

"I will be departing as the chairperson of Mvelaphanda. I will not be on any boards. I just became a minister only yesterday (Monday) afternoon so we are sitting with lawyers," Sexwale told SABC radio after being sworn in.

He dismissed reports of a probe into his business interests as sensationalist.

"It sells newspapers. There's no probe that is happening. It's about severing ties with the office in which I had been," said Sexwale.

Mvelaphanda Group has a 10.7percent stake in construction giant Group Five, a 10percent shareholding in Absa, and investments in property, which could conflict with his new political role.

Asked if he would relinquish his assets in the private sector, Sexwale replied: "No, you can't relinquish assets. I can't throw them into the sea.

"It's about operations. I cannot work in the private sector. It doesn't mean you cannot own in the private sector. I cannot work there; I'm not operational," said Sexwale.