The Democratic Alliance (DA) will write to the Chairperson of the Home Affairs Portfolio Committee urgently requesting that the phone records of Minister Gigaba be subpoenaed.
The DA has no reason to believe that the Minister has been truthful in his characterization of the nature of his engagements with the Gupta family, or the number of times he met with them.
In his testimony before the committee, the Minister failed to disclose the number of occasions on which he attended functions at the invitation of the Gupta’s. He vacillated between ‘five or six’ and ‘more than once but less than five’ over the last ten years.
Minister Gigaba has been found by North Gauteng High Court to have lied under oath. His appeal in this regard was dismissed by the Supreme Court of Appeals.
In a reply to a parliamentary question in April 2016 the Minister said neither he nor the Deputy Minister had “knowingly held any official meetings with persons who are, or who are associates of or employees of any persons whose surname or family name is Gupta.”
This statement needs to be interrogated in light of the Minister’s testimony in the inquiry last night that invitations to events were extended to him through his office rather than personally, which he claims he attended for reasons of “social cohesion”. He claimed that he had no personal relationship with the Gupta’s.
If the Minister claims to have no personal relationship with the Gupta’s and that he has not held any official meetings with them, what exactly is the nature of his engagement with the Gupta family? The Minister was defensive and evasive in his responses when these questions were put to him in the inquiry last night, fueling doubts about his commitment to full disclosure of the truth.
In the past, captured individuals have been exposed by the forensic examination of the phones, allowing the truth to be ventilated.
An example of this was the exposure of Brian Molefe by former Public Protector Thuli Madonsela in her State of Capture report. It was the Public Protector’s examination of his records that finally gave South Africans assurance of the truth.
We encourage Minister Gigaba to fast-track this process by submitting his mobile devices for forensic examination of his own volition. This is the most credible method of refreshing the Minster’s memory, and of corroborating his account to the satisfaction of the committee and the nation.
South Africans must know the whole truth if we are to close the chapter of State Capture in our history. The DA will spare no effort in ensuring that justice takes its full course, and that the truth is uncovered in its entirety.