Guptas and Myeni dodge state capture inquiry
The Gupta brothers and former SAA chairperson Dudu Myeni have been accused of showing an “unacceptable disregard” for parliament for not putting in an appearance at the state capture inquiry.
The portfolio committee on public enterprises tasked with the inquiry into the mismanagement of state funds in state-owned enterprises said earlier on Monday that it expected to hear evidence from Home Affairs Minister Malusi Gigaba‚ Myeni and the Gupta brothers.
But soon afterwards it emerged that Myeni was still booked off sick and a lawyer representing the Guptas indicated that they were out of the country.
Democratic Alliance (DA) MP Natasha Mazzone said on Monday: “The Guptas have apparently flown the coop and are not in South Africa. Myeni claims she is still sick - we have yet to see the original doctor's note.
“This is a flagrant abuse of the committee's politeness and an unacceptable disregard for Parliament and the Constitution under which this inquiry has been established and cannot be allowed to continue.”
Mazzone said the party would request on Tuesday that the Guptas and Myeni be formally summoned to appear. Should they ignore the summons‚ they would be liable to a fine or imprisonment of up to 12 months.
“Last week‚ the Minister of Home Affairs also declined to appear on the date requested as he claimed he needed more time to prepare. He is now set to appear … but given his track record of ducking and diving‚ we will believe it when we see it‚” said Mazzone.
“State Capture has hollowed out key public institutions and robbed South Africa of billions of the people’s money. Those who may have been involved or who may have vital information must account to Parliament.
“Those who attempted what is now known to be one of the greatest heists of all time must know this: there is nowhere to run and nowhere to hide. No one is above the law.”