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S.African MP believes politics delayed Gupta case
March 09, 2018
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JOHANNESBURG: A South African lawmaker leading an investigation into accusations that businessmen used links with ex-president Jacob Zuma to win contracts said on Thursday he suspected prosecutors had delayed taking action over the case for political reasons.

Mathole Motshekga said most members of the parliamentary investigative committee he chaired believed the state prosecution service had held up the case until it was sure Zuma would not be replaced by a close ally in a party leadership election in December.

“This is a very serious matter. It would mean people were serving political interests rather than serving the public,” he said.

The head of the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA), Shaun Abrahams, dismissed Motshekga’s assertion on Thursday, telling Reuters: “There was no political influence whatsoever. There’s no evidence to that effect.” Zuma resigned last month, ending nine scandal-plagued years in power overshadowed by accusations by opposition politicians that his businessmen friends the Gupta brothers had used their link with him to win millions of dollars of state contracts.

Both Zuma and the Guptas have repeatedly denied any wrongdoing.

Zuma was replaced by Cyril Ramaphosa who promised to fight corruption. Ramaphosa had already become the leader of the ruling African National Congress party after narrowly defeating Zuma’s ex-wife and preferred successor, Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, in December.


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