On day two of Public Enterprise Minister Pravin Gordhan's testimony at the Zondo Commission of Inquiry into State Capture, he explained the kind of impact Nhlanhla Nene's axing had on the economy.
He spoke about how billions of rands were wiped off the PIC because the value of the shares depreciated.
He took the commission through the days after Nene was fired when Des van Rooyen was appointed finance minister, resulting in markets being in turmoil.
Gordhan explained how he received two calls, one from Jessie Duarte and another from Cyril Ramaphosa, both telling him that he will be receiving a call from President Jacob Zuma in which he will be asking him to do something which he must not refuse.
He says he received a call for a meeting from Jacob Zuma's office and when he got there Zuma told him that he wants to redeploy him from the local government department into the National Treasury as finance minister.— Clement Manyathela, EWN reporter
He says Zuma made it clear that he wasn't removing Des van Rooyen because he didn't have confidence in him. In fact, he made it clear that he was happy with Des van Rooyen. He believed that Van Rooyen was qualified for the position of finance minister but there were other people who believed that Gordhan could "calm the markets"— Clement Manyathela, EWN reporter
At the time, Gordhan says he did not make any deals with Zuma but wanted him to commit to dealing with three things:
- SAA and its financial woes as well as the presence of Dudu Myeni at that SOE
- The procurement of nuclear to be done in an affordable manner
- The presence of Tom Moyane at Sars and issues around the Rogue Unit
Gordhan also confirmed that there was no position available for Nhlanhla Nene at the Brics Bank, saying that it was just a ploy by Zuma to get rid of Nene.
He also called on those who are accusing him of having an offshore account and asking people he was assisting with tax problem at Sars to deposit money there, to come before the commission and have their allegations tested.
He made it very clear that he doesn't submit to bullying.— Clement Manyathela, EWN reporter
To hear the rest of the report by Clement Manyathela, listen below: