Former finance minister, Trevor Manuel, has threatened to take legal action against broadcaster, JJ Tabane, should he refuse to apologise and retract his statement.
This follows utterances made by Tabane during an interview on a YouTube channel – suggesting Manuel’s alleged involvement in the formation of the Congress of the People (COPE).
In a letter, Manuel says he was a full and committed member of the ANC during COPE’s establishment.
Manuel says there is no evidence to suggest that he participated in forming COPE.
“The idea that the Minister of Finance would be involved in forming a party as a rival to the ANC ahead of the 2009 elections is bizarre. There is no evidence that I participated in any discussions and all that I said to JJ in my letter is admit that you have made a major error. Retract it, recant and then we can march on in life. But he is insisting that he is correct. There is nothing to suggest that I had any contact with the founders of COPE at the time of its formation, which would have been about 2008, into the 2009 elections.”
Meanwhile, some newspapers are reporting that Manual had given Tabane until 5PM yesterday (Wednesday) to apologise, to which, SowetanLive published an article where Tabane claims he did not defame Manuel with his claim that links him to the formation of COPE.