‘No forced Absa payback’ – Times LIVE


This is in court papers he filed as a respondent in Black Land First’s application that he be compelled to recover billions looted from the state in the dying days of apartheid.

The case involving Absa concerns R1.5-billion that was illegally given by the Reserve Bank to Bankorp, which later became Absa.

CIEX, a British firm made up of former MI5 and MI6 operatives, had approached the government in the late 1990s saying it could recover the money for a fee.

In his papers Gordhan said CIEX’s recommendations, which involved the Reserve Bank threatening Absa into paying the money back without it going to court, had not been implemented because they were unlawful.

The report is also the subject of an investigation by the public protector.

“That the CIEX report has not been considered appropriate for the implementation by any of the relevant authorities since the dawn of democracy or by either the Heath commission or the Davis panel is significant,” said Gordhan.

“There have therefore been consistent decisions not to implement (or recommend the implementation of) the report. None of these decisions has been reviewed. Instead, I am now – 19 years after the report was issued – sought to be compelled to implement it.”

Gordhan asked that the application, which he described as “entirely unprecedented in its political intrigue”, be dismissed with costs. “It seeks relief resting on a 21-year-old unsolicited document prepared by retired MI6 spies,” he said.

“The application violates the doctrine of separation of powers, because it seeks to impose on the Minister of Finance a duty to comply with recommendations advanced in a report in circumstances where government has itself since 1997 ejected CIEX and rejected its report, at least implicitly,” he said.

Gordhan accused Black Land First of using its application to settle scores arising from his own case involving the Gupta’s Oakbay group of companies.

In an application made on October 26, Black Land First, led by former EFF MP Andile Mngxitama, asked that the courts declare Gordhan “conflicted and captured by white capital” because he has shares in the banks.

It also sought an order that Gordhan release information on R68-billion declared by companies as having been illegally taken out of South Africa.

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