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Gupta brothers and Duduzane Zuma want to cross-examine state capture inquiry witnesses

Ajay and Atul Gupta might be called to testify at the state capture commission of inquiry sitting in Parktown, Johannesburg.
Ajay and Atul Gupta might be called to testify at the state capture commission of inquiry sitting in Parktown, Johannesburg.
Image: Martin Rhodes

Two of the Gupta brothers and former president Jacob Zuma's son Duduzane have applied to cross-examine witnesses at the state capture inquiry.

Advocate Mike Hellens‚ SC for Ajay Gupta‚ said his client was applying to cross-examine former ANC MP Vytjie Mentor and Themba Maseko‚ former head of the Government Communication and Information System (GCIS). Both testified that they had met Ajay Gupta and that he had made unlawful requests.

Mentor told the commission that Ajay Gupta had offered her a ministerial job on condition that she terminate the SA Airways route to India. Maseko alleged that Ajay Gupta told him to ensure that the GCIS R600m budget was spent on Gupta media companies.

Hellens has asked Zondo to make a ruling on whether an implicated party must testify if they want to cross-examine witnesses.

Ajay Gupta‚ his brother Rajesh‚ and Duduzane Zuma have applied to cross-examine former deputy finance minister Mcebisi Jonas.

Jonas accused the Gupta brothers and Zuma of offering him a R600m bribe and the position of finance minister before Nhlanhla Nene was removed.

Controversial businessman Fana Hlongwane and Lakela Kaunda have also applied to cross-examine Mentor. Two Hawks officials‚ Mandla Mtolo and Maj-Gen Zinhle Mnonopi‚ also want to cross-examine Mentor and Jonas.

Hawks boss Godfrey Lebeya suspended Mnonopi last week following Jonas's testimony that she had tried to force him to sign a false statement to halt police investigations.

Former public enterprises minister Lynne Brown has also indicated that she wants to apply to cross-examine witnesses‚ despite not yet being directly implicated in any testimony thus far.

Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo‚ who is heading the commission‚ told her lawyer that her application "might not be properly considered" until she is implicated.

The Commission has adjourned for 30 minutes so that legal representatives for those implicated can meet with the commission's legal team to discuss a way forward for the applications.

Legal teams have asked that the matter of the applications be dealt with as soon as possible. Current GCIS acting head Phumla Williams will continue giving testimony after the break.

More shocking information emerged in the second week of the state capture inquiry, during which former ANC MP Vytjie Mentor, former Government Communication and Information System head Themba Maseko and acting GCIS head Phumla Williams gave their testimonies. Here’s what you need to know from this week. Music: Turn On - RW Smith https://youtu.be/EzIBvLO8V9s

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