Henly honours Gordhan with doctorate for 'brave, selfless work'

Public Enterprises minister Pravin Gordhan
Public Enterprises minister Pravin Gordhan

Henley Business School Africa has bestowed an honorary doctorate in business administration on public enterprises minister Pravin Gordhan. The degree was conferred on the minister at the school's annual graduation ceremony held at the Theatre on the Track, Kyalami in Johannesburg on Thursday.

Conferring the degree on behalf of the University of Reading of which Henley is a constituent school, international dean, professor John Board said the degree was to celebrate Gordhan “for all of the great, brave and selfless work he is doing for South Africa”.

The conferring comes just a few days after Gordhan testified about the bullying he endured during former president Jacob Zuma’s time in office. During his testimony at the inquiry into state capture this week, Gordhan alleged that he was fired by Zuma for refusing to enable the Gupta brothers to capture the national treasury.

He testified that the decision to remove him came days before the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria was to hear arguments in his application seeking a declaratory relief from having to intervene in the banks' closure of Gupta-related accounts. "One could surmise that the intention was to get rid of us‚ put in another minister and withdraw the application to the high court in Pretoria," Gordhan told the commission in Parktown, chaired by deputy chief justice Raymond Zondo.

The former finance minister has also had to come to the defence of his daughter who was accused of benefitting from deals with the government. Responding to these allegations by EFF leader Julius Malema, during his address to hundreds of supporters outside the commission’s venue, Gordhan said it was not true that his daughter held directorships or private shares in the entities listed by the EFF.

Gordhan closed his address to the commission by explaining that his daughter, Anisha, was employed by Investec Bankbetween 2007 and 2017‚ where she was responsible for capital investments in emerging‚ privately-owned businesses. That meant she represented Investec as a nonexecutive director on the boards of these companies. "It's not her money. Their job is to look after the money of the bank and the investors‚" said Gordhan.

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