South Africa’s largest banks have testified at the State Capture Inquiry.
Highlights thus far:
Standard Bank representative Ian Sinton has implicated former Mineral Resources Minister Mosebenzi Zwane and Labour Minister Mildred Oliphant who, according to his testimony, tried to get the bank to reverse its decision to close the Guptas’ accounts.
FNB and Absa questioned the Government’s apparent “interference” in their decision to close the accounts of all Gupta-linked companies.
Nedbank CEO Mike Brown has told the state capture inquiry he felt threatened by the then Mineral Resources Minister Mosebenzi Zwane when he attended an inter-ministerial committee meeting to discuss the closure of Gupta-linked accounts.
Brown testified that Zwane threatened that something would happen to the bank’s licence if it did not reverse its decision to close the Gupta accounts.
Zwane also suggested that Nedbank become the primary banker for the Guptas, a suggestion Brown shot down.
Mahlase discussed the five most important aspects of the banks’ testimony at the State Capture Inquiry.
Listen to the interview in the audio below (and/or scroll down for quotes from it).
We had every senior representative of the banks basically telling very similar stories…— Mahlatsi Mahlase, South African National Editors Forum
The banks were able to stand their ground… the ignorance of the Cabinet ministers… putting at risk the economy of the country… These Cabinet ministers were willing to risk all of that for the Gupta family…— Mahlatsi Mahlase, South African National Editors Forum
To have the governing party [ANC] and Cabinet decide to intervene shows the power they [Guptas] did have.— Mahlatsi Mahlase, South African National Editors Forum
Did nobody else oppose… did others actually object to this?— Mahlatsi Mahlase, South African National Editors Forum
It [the ANC] cannot claim innocence… every time there is a new witness an ANC member is mentioned… It’s going to be very difficult for the ANC to say they are not on trial…— Mahlatsi Mahlase, South African National Editors Forum
By 2010 already, senior [ANC] members knew about the influence of the Gupta family…— Mahlatsi Mahlase, South African National Editors Forum
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