Public Investment Corporation boss Dan Matjila believes he is in the crosshairs of powerful people who want access to the R1.9 trillion of pension money he manages on behalf of government employees.
"I've got the keys. They're looking for the keys to the big safe," Matjila says. This is after he was hauled before the PIC board last week to answer allegations against him that were leaked mysteriously. This was after he turned down a request from SAA chairman Dudu Myeni for a R6bn loan to keep the bankrupt national carrier from going under. Myeni, a close friend of President Zuma, was reportedly furious.
In an astonishingly frank interview this week, Matjila told Business Times he believed there was a connection. He said several requests for transactions that did not meet the PIC's investment criteria had been made by "politically connected people".
"It becomes very frustrating for them when we are unable to help them", he said.
He said although the majority of the board had accepted the comprehensive documentary evidence he presented, which proved his innocence of the allegations against him, the chairman and vice chairman, both recent Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba appointments, had insisted on an internal audit into the allegations.
"There is a lot of desperation and there is urgency to deal with this quickly."
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