EFF accuses banks of colluding with Gupta family

Ajay and Atul Gupta.
Ajay and Atul Gupta.
Image: Martin Rhodes

The banks colluded with the Gupta family in the looting of state funds and their testimonies at the state capture commission of inquiry is sheer display of hypocrisy, according to EFF, which said the banks were happy to do “dirty business” until the removal of Nhanhla Nene as finance minister which negatively affected stocks.

The organisation said in the statement: “It is impossible that the banks only started to notice the suspicious transactions of the Guptas and their companies in 2016 as they now want us to believe. The truth is that these banks colluded in the looting of the country as it was feeding into their profit maximasation motives and greed. These are the only driving forces behind the commercial banks. For them it’s profit before people and the country.”

EFF’s comments come as banks that closed accounts belonging or linked to the Gupta family and their businesses are giving evidence at the (deputy chief justice Raymond) Zondo commission looking into allegations of state capture.

The banks' closed all Gupta-linked accounts citing reputational risks following allegations that the controversial family had captured the state during former President Jacob Zuma's tenure.

Standard Bank’s Ian Sinton told the commission on Monday how the ANC summoned its executives to its headquarters, Luthuli House, to explain why it closed the family’s bank accounts.

“We hope that judge Zondo will not be fooled by their latter day self-cleansing exercise and crocodile tears shed on the witness stand for public consumption,” explained EFF, also calling on the South African Reserve Bank [SARB] and the Financial Intelligence Centre to investigate the banks’ complicity in state capture.

The banks in question are Standard Bank, Absa, FNB and Nedbank.

“… and why they [banks] turned a blind eye towards obviously suspicious transactions before 2016 and to hold them accountable for their part in state capture. If the SARB does not act, the EFF will initiate a parliamentary inquiry process.”

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