Mcebisi Jonas takes stand in State Capture inquiry on Friday

Mcebisi Jonas
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It’s a much-awaited testimony at the state capture inquiry on Friday. Former finance deputy minister, Mcebisi Jonas, is the second witness to appear before the commission.

He made the staggering claim of being offered R600 million in cash to allow looting of the treasury.

“Members of the Gupta family offered me the position of minister of finance to replace then minister Nene; I rejected this out of hand. The basis of my rejection of their offer is that it makes a mockery of our hard earned democracy, the trust of our people and none apart from the President of the republic appoints ministers,” claimed Jonas.

That was a frank statement, underpinning the deep roots of state capture and exposing what appears to be an inter-locking web of corruption. Implicating among others, the Gupta family, Duduzane Zuma and former President Jacob Zuma.

Jonas claimed he had met Duduzane, businessman Fana Hlongwane and Ajay Gupta. Hlongwane was implicated in the Arms Deal scandal.

But there were vehement protestations:  “As far as I’m concerned I never seen him. I never met him in my life,” said Ajay Gupta in June 2016.

Jonas’ testimony is critical to the inquiry, but he’s likely to face a volley of questions fired by legal guns hired by the accused.

Another former MP, the outspoken Vytjie Mentor, will also take the stand. She claimed she was offered the Public Enterprises Portfolio, to make decisions partial to the Guptas.

Mcebisi Jonas’s’ much anticipated testimony is key to the commission as he was the first to blow the lid off the Gupta’s alleged hand in some of the country’s executive decisions. He is also expected to focus on what he told former public protector Thuli Madonsela and the statement he submitted.

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