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Fri Oct 21 13:16:52 SAST 2016

Gordhan's court application 'undiluted nonsense': Oakbay

Ernest Mabuza | 18 October, 2016 14:27
Gupta Brothers interview
Indian businessmen Ajay and Atul Gupta at the New Age Newspaper's offices in Midrand, Johannesburg on 4 March 2011.
Image by: Muntu Vilakazi/Gallo Images

Oakbay Investments and the Gupta family have dismissed the court application by Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan as "undiluted nonsense‚" saying it appeared to be little more than the usual political games.

The family‚ a major shareholder at Oakbay Investments‚ said it and the company were delighted to have been cited as respondents in the minister’s application and they could begin to formally clear their names.

On Friday‚ Gordhan launched an application seeking an order declaring that he was not by law empowered or obliged to intervene in the relationship between Oakbay companies and the banks.

Gordhan launched the application after informing Oakbay that he could not intervene in Oakbay’s dispute with the banks‚ which had closed their business banking accounts. In a statement issued by Van der Merwe Associates‚ on behalf of Ajay Gupta and Oakbay Investments‚ the family and Oakbay said the application’s detail was fundamentally flawed.

The law firm said of the 72 transactions flagged as suspicious‚ their initial analysis showed that six transactions totalling R4.096bn referred to the Optimum mine before it was under Oakbay’s control and so was not transacted by Oakbay and the family.

They also said 24 transactions totalling R325m were perfectly legitimate‚ five transactions totalling R1.689bn related to Oakbay Resources and Energy and all information was being supplied to its auditor for review.

"Another 20 vaguely refer to 'multiple transactions' that makes any further analysis impossible without further detail from the Finance Minister‚" Oakbay and Gupta said in the statement. It said all 72 transactions were approved and cleared by the respective banks processing the transaction.

- TMG Digital


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