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Tue Dec 06 16:05:12 SAST 2016

DA says request to call Guptas to account snubbed

TMG Digital | 2016-03-25 08:14:03.0
A file photo of Atul Gupta and his brother Rajesh Gupta at the ANC's elective conference on December 17, 2012 in Mangaung, South Africa.
Image by: Gallo Images / Sunday Times / Simphiwe Nkwali

The Democratic Alliance (DA) wants the Guptas hauled before Parliament.

On Thursday‚ the party demanded action on a request it sent a week ago to the chairperson of the portfolio committee on public enterprises‚ “to summon the Guptas to Parliament and demand an explanation for their undue influence on our state-owned entities (SOE)”‚ had not been acknowledged.

“It is as unacceptable as it is telling that our initial request to summon dated 18 March 2016 has been ignored‚” said the DA‚

“The African National Congress (ANC) in Parliament is evidently protecting its cronies to save face in the midst of mounting claims of state capture at the hands of the Guptas.”

The DA’s comments came after the Mail and Guardian “revealed that high-ranking ANC figures are embroiled in a business network spanning across our major SOEs”‚ including Eskom‚ Transnet‚ the Passenger Rail Agency of SA‚ and Telkom.

The were‚ the opposition party said‚ ANC deputy secretary-general Jesse Duarte‚ mineral resources minister Mosebenzi Zwane and former finance minister Des Van Rooyen.

Mindful that it had laid recently criminal charges against members of the Gupta family‚ the DA said: “Other investigations notwithstanding‚ Parliament has a constitutional duty to satisfy itself that state entities are being used for the benefit of the South African and not being abused by a politically expedient executive and their cohort in the Gupta family”.

“Given the gravity of these allegations‚ there is no valid reason why of (portfolio committee chairperson Dipuo) Letsatsi-Duba has not given effect to the DA’s request.

“The only logical conclusion one can draw is that she is acting to protect the ANC’s image and preserve the Gupta’s enjoyed privileges allowing them to use the peoples’ SOEs as their own personal bank accounts to pilfer at will.

“Granting our request will be the only way to dispel these suspicions and show her commitment to her mandate as a member of Parliament.”

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