The Gupta family has responded to revelations made by deputy finance minister Mcebisi Jonas that they offered him the job as finance minister, flat-out denying such an event ever happened.
A Gupta family spokesperson told News24 that Jonas’ latest allegations “are just more political point scoring between rival factions within the ANC.”
“To be clear: any suggestion that the Gupta family or any of our representatives or associates have offered anyone a job in government is totally false,” they said.
“We challenge Minister Jonas to provide a full account of the supposed meeting that took place, under oath, in a court of law. Minister Jonas is attempting to cover up and divert attention away from his own relationships and practices. We are confident questions about his own ethical standards will be exposed.”
The family said it will not provide any further running commentary on what it calls “a politically-motivated campaign against us.”
In a statement released on Wednesday (16 March), Jonas confirmed reports that he had met with the Guptas and they had offered him the job.
He said that he hesitated to speak out publicly on this matter until now, but felt it is no longer possible to remain quiet.
“Let me state the facts on the matter of whether I was approached by nongovernmental individuals in respect of the position of Minister of Finance,” he said.
“Members of the Gupta family offered me the position of Minister of Finance to replace then-Minister Nene. I rejected this out of hand. The basis of my rejection of their offer is
that it makes a mockery of our hard earned democracy, the trust of our people and no one apart from the President of the Republic appoints ministers.”
“Let me also place it on record that there was no discussion between the Deputy Secretary General of the ANC Ms Jessie Duarte and myself on this matter,” he said.