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Gordhan rejects claims of impropriety in handling of Takatso/SAA deal

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Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan said that allegations levelled by former Director-General Kgathatso Tlhakudi when he wrote to Parliament were ‘unfounded’ and ‘unsubstantiated’.

FILE: Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan. Picture: Abigail Javier/Eyewitness News

CAPE TOWN – Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan has dismissed allegations of impropriety in the handling of the Takatso/South African Airways (SAA) deal.

Gordhan said that allegations levelled by former Director-General Kgathatso Tlhakudi when he wrote to Parliament were “unfounded” and “unsubstantiated”.

He added that the private equity deal was above board and approved by Cabinet.

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Gordhan on Tuesday briefed the public enterprises committee on the claims and also faced a string of questions from MPs.

Minister Pravin Gordhan failed to meet with MPs last week due to health issues, but he came in person on Tuesday to address the 16 allegations levelled against him.

The allegations include grossly undervaluing SAA in the majority sale to Takatso and failure to do proper due diligence in the transaction.

Gordhan on Tuesday finally addressed the claims, calling them baseless.

“Let me emphatically say that any assertions about corrupt behaviour on my part or the department’s part is rejected out of hand.”

He said that any attempt to cast the deal in a bad light was political.

“The allegations have no foundation whatsoever in actual facts, that this is part of political smearing.”

Committee chairperson, Khaya Magaxa, said the committee would now consider Gordhan’s responses at its next meeting before finalising the matter.

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