Gordhan’s job not in jeopardy: Zuma

29 February 2016 - 18:17 By TMG Digital

President Jacob Zuma said that Pravin Gordhan’s job as newly reappointed Finance Minister is not in jeopardy. The presidency said in a statement that “reports have insinuated that the position of Minister Gordhan could be in jeopardy. The President wishes to emphasise that Minister Gordhan remains the Minister of Finance and any positing that the position of the Minister is under any threat is dismissed with the contempt it deserves.”Zuma said speculation or calls for him to dismiss the South African Revenue Service (SARS) boss Tom Moyane‚ or interfere with the work of government agencies‚ were “unhelpful”.“The Presidency wishes to remind all interested parties of the need to respect the institutions and processes created in terms of the Constitution and the law…There are prescripts within government which stipulate the processes to be utilised to resolve labour relations issues or disputes within the work environment.”He publicly acknowledged a rift between Gordhan and Moyane.“The difficulty in the relationship between the Minister of Finance and the SARS Commissioner is being dealt with through the correct channels using the correct legal prescripts‚” Zuma said.“The President began discussions with Minister Gordhan and Mr Moyane on this matter long before the State of the Nation Address and Budget 2016. Measures are being put in place to address the issues responsibly and amicably‚ for the benefit of all. We urge interested parties to exercise calm and restraint and allow space for the matters to be resolved using correct channels.”Zuma said reports there is “a war at SARS and that the President and the Minister of Finance are somehow at war” was “a total fabrication and mischievous sensationalism”.Earlier on Monday‚ the Directorate of Priority Crimes Investigation (Hawks) said that they were investigating a case concerning the alleged illegal operations by a so-called ‘rogue unit’ within the SA Revenue Services‚ “not Mr Gordhan per se”.“Mr Gordhan was the Commissioner at SARS at the time when the covert unit was allegedly established. As part of our thorough investigations into the operations of the said unit we needed some clarity and Mr Gordhan‚ who was the man at the helm of SARS at that time‚ was the suitable man to talk to‚ hence we sent him a set of questions for him to answer.”Gordhan confirmed late last week that he had received a set of questions from the Hawks.He asserted the investigation was meant to intimidate and distract him from the work that he had to do as finance minster: “There is a group of people that are not interested in the economic stability of this country and the welfare of its people. It seems they are interested in disrupting institutions and destroying reputations.”“I can categorically state that the Hawks have no reason to ‘investigate’ me‚” said Gordhan.

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