Cape Town – A roundup of Tuesday’s top economic and finance reads on Fin24.
Guptas say Eskom Inquiry ‘political showboating’ in lawyer’s letter
Lawyers representing the Gupta brothers have slammed the credibility of Parliament’s Eskom Inquiry in a lawyer’s letter, saying it is an exercise in “political showboating” with unfair questioning of witnesses.
The letter, a response from the Guptas’ attorneys to an invitation by the committee on public enterprises to testify, also states that the Gupta brothers are not in South Africa at the moment.
“As it happens, our clients are not presently in the Republic of South Africa, being absent for business reasons. Accordingly, our clients decline the invitation to appear before the portfolio committee,” it states.
#EskomInquiry: Ministers must not get involved in tenders – Gigaba
Home Affairs Minister Malusi Gigaba distanced himself from tenders awarded to service providers by state-owned enterprises during his time as minister of public enterprises.
Gigaba responded to questions by DA MP Natasha Mazzone during the inquiry, stating “for the record” that ministers should not get involved in tenders.
“I was not involved in deciding who gets what contract where,” said Gigaba. He said his role was to sign the section 54 of the PFMA approval.
“You expect the board to exercise oversight to make sure there is no corruption. You expect that the executives will do the same,” he said.
It raises questions of their interests if they are involved in procurement details, he said. “Ministers must remain out of procurement in state owned companies and in their departments.”
Nene woos overseas investors, just like Gordhan a year ago before recall
Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene is in London together with labour and business as part of a three-leg international roadshow to woo investors and ratings agencies. This follows dramatic changes to the Cabinet and the appointment of President Cyril Ramaphosa.
He will also meet investors and bondholders in New York and Boston later this week.
“The purpose of the roadshow is to continue developing relationships with international investors and to provide them with an update post MTBPS (Medium Term Budget Policy Statement, also known as mini budget).
“Roadshows are held bi-annually, post the [National] Budget and MTBPS,” Treasury’s media team said in an emailed response to Fin24.
Steinhoff submitted ‘malicious’ report to Hawks
The report Steinhoff provided to the Hawks was “malicious” as it contained no information, the head of the Hawks’ commercial crime unit, Major-General Alfred Khana told the Standing Committee on Public Accounts on Tuesday.
He said a day before Steinhoff’s board appeared before Parliament on January 31, they provided a report to the Hawks.
“It is another malicious report to the extent that there is nothing in the report,” said Khana. “It doesn’t even say who did what.”
He said there is nothing they can do with the report. He said he wrote to Steinhoff’s chairperson [Heather Sonn], but he is waiting to hear back from her, as she is overseas.
Understanding the ABCs of the land expropriation debate
The National Assembly has adopted a motion for a constitutional review allowing for the expropriation of land without compensation.
The move has caught the attention of investors and governments beyond South Africa’s borders, with some fearing land grabs, and others concerned about how this would impact the economy.
In our latest explainer, Fin24 unpacks eight key questions around the debate on land expropriation without compensation.
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