ANCYL accuses Gordhan and Ramaphosa of exploiting SAA

The African National Congress Youth League (ANCYL) accused Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan and Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa of plotting to collapse the South African Airways (SAA) and creating space for private business.

ANCYL Spokesperson Mlondi Mkhize said Ramaphosa and Gordhan are directly influencing the airline to benefit companies they have interests in.

Mkhize also said when SAA was moved from the Public Enterprises Department to Treasury, Gordhan appointed a consultant which instructed the airline to take everything to Bidvest.

“The first he does, he tell SAA that it must take every other thing to a company called Bidvest, who is at Bidvest,?” questioned Mkhize.

“Amongst those that we know is at Bidvest is the deputy president of the ANC and that of our government, Comrade Cyril Ramaphosa. But who else is there? It is the minister himself, Pravin Gordhan,” added Mkhize.

Mkhize then touched on the issue that the airline has resolved to close its lucrative, saying this call was made to benefit other airlines.

“You are told that SAA must close some of its routes and among those routes are the most lucrative routes which include the London route, and who must take over these routes? We are safely aware that it is Comair,” said Mkhize

“Who owns Comair? Who are the stakeholders at Comair? It is Bidvest and Comrade Pravin who owns nothing less than 20% of Comair,” added the Spokesperson.

ANCYL President Collen Maine said it should be known that they are not accusing Gordhan and Ramphosa of corruption.

“We’ve never said anybody is corrupt, but we are saying that people are conflicted, hence we are saying that SAA should go back to the Public Enterprises Department,” said Maine

ANC secretary general Gwede Mantashe reacted to the allegation said he won’t “get into the mud with people that use silly season to throw mud at each other”.

On the other hand, Ramaphosa’s office denied the allegations and said the Deputy President doesn’t have any share at Bidvests.

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Students set to picket outside Parliament

University Students around the Western Cape are expected to march to Parliament, to demand answers for the Fees Must Fall crisis.

Universities including: the University of Cape Town (UCT), University of the Western Cape (UWC), Stellenbosch University (SU) and Cape Peninsula University of Technology (CPUT) have been in support of the Fees Must Fall movement and are expected to be part of the march.

The march is set to coincide with Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan’s medium-term budget speech in Parliament.

CPUT’s Fees Must Fall spokesman Lukhanyo Vangqa said is the prpose of the mach is to get the government to respond to the issues of higher education.

“The purpose of the march is to highlight the plight of students, to legislature, who are unable to access higher education because they are poor and black,” said Vangqa.

UCT Vice-Chancellor Dr Max Price urged staff members and the general public to join the students’ picket outside Parliament.

 “Members of the UCT executive will participate in the UCT Employees Union picket. We invite staff and students to show their support for the cause of greater state funding for higher education and more affordable education for all by participating in one or other of the protests,” said Prince.

On the other hand Higher Education Minister Blade Nzimande said the government is working on plans to address the crisis.

He then said the government is expanding efforts to provide free education to poor students.

Zuma to be grilled in Parliament

President Jacob Zuma is set to appear before the National Council of Provinces (NCOP) to answer oral questions from opposition parties.

The President will come face to face with the opposition in parliament and is expected to answer questions about the investigation against Finance Minister Pravin Godhan and about its disastrous consequences on the country’s economic stability.

Earlier this month, the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA), confirmed that Gordhan was served with a summons and will be charged and prosecuted for fraud.

The NPA said the Minister is charged for approving early retirement for South African Revenue Service (Sars) suspended deputy commissioner Ivan Pillay.

Recently, Justice Minister Michael Masutha revealed that he and Zuma knew long ago that the Finance Minister was going to be prosecuted for fraud.

The Democratic Alliance (DA) said they will be questioning why the charges were brought at such a crucial time for the country.

On the other hand At least 80 heads of top South African firms including Anglo American, Barclays Africa Group and Naspers want fraud charges against Gordhan to be dropped.

The corporate leaders joined opposition parties, analysts, and top leaders inside the ruling African National Congress, including Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa, who have publicly expressed support for Gordhan.

Mantashe warns ANC structures not to get involve in Gordhan-Hawks matter

The African National Congress (ANC) has warned all its structures no to get involved in the battle between the Hawks and Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan.

ANC Secretary-General Gwede Mantashe said the involvement of its structures in this battle conveys confusion to the public, making them doubt the ANC’s position in the matter.

“All structures of the ANC, including the Umkhonto WeSizwe Military Veterans Association (MKMVA), should not enter the fray as they contribute to the cacophony of noise, which promotes general confusion, and the perception of a politically motivated persecution,” said Mantashe.

On Monday, MKMVA chairperson Kebby Maphatsoe said the whole Gordhan-Hawks matter is a well orchestrated and deliberate attack at the Unit.

“The Hawks is but one of those institutions created by an act of parliament to enforce the law. Why then is the Hawks not being given the same affection, protection and support in the latest investigation? Is it because it is investigating the finance minister, among other persons?” questioned Maphatsoe.

Mantashe said the ANC hasn’t changed its stance on the matter, he added they are behind the Minister.

“Our position remains unchanged; all parties to the dispute are encouraged to cooperate in the investigation,” he said.

Former Finance Minister,Speaking as MKMVA Treasure-General Van Rooyen said Gordhan was using the media to gain sympathy on this whole issue.

“What we are arguing here is that, if you are given an opportunity to respond through state institutions, why then run to the media and give responses through the media? That is in our take, trying to take the matter which is supposed to be processed within appropriately established state institutions to the public,” Van Rooyen said.

Mantashe agreed with Van Rooyen and said the matter will continue proving to be impasse if it keeps debated in the public domain.

“We do however caution them against taking a public posture that seems to isolate them from the rest of government and position them as victims to be protected by society. Our position remains unchanged; all parties to the dispute are encouraged to cooperate in the investigation. This matter serves no one by being debated in the public domain,” said Mantashe.

He then urged both parties to deal amicably with the issue away from the public glare.

By Senzile Kubheka