Sunday, September 04, 2016

South Africa: Hands Off Gordhan - Struggle Stalwarts
News24 Wire

More than 25 anti-apartheid stalwarts have put their weight behind Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan, saying he is a victim of government's "internal war".

"There's obviously a fight within government circles. There is an internal war going on and I think Pravin is obviously one of the victims here," struggle veteran Judge Thumba Pillay told News24 on Saturday.

Pillay along with with more than 25 other activists this week wrote a letter to Gordhan saying they were concerned at the continued harassment of him and his colleagues over the past few months.

"Those of us who support him make it clear that no one is above the law, but government agencies should not be used to persecute and settle scores which seems to be what's happening."

Pillay said he had "an association with Pravin that goes back over 40 years" having been involved in the ANC since 1955.

"I am very saddened by what's happening at the moment. I mean we were all very euphoric in 1994. But look at where we are at the moment. I cannot believe what is happening in this country."

Pillay went on to call for President Jacob Zuma to resign.

"As far as I am concerned, the president must go. I see that as a major issue. He of course has some kind of hold on the cabinet ministers who are afraid to speak. But the way the ANC performed in the last election it is clear people want him out."

Gordhan is accused of having breached the Public Finance Management Act and the Prevention of Corrupt Activities Act when he approved, as finance minister, former commissioner of the SA Revenue Services' Ivan Pillay's early retirement in 2010.

He is also accused of involvement in the setting up of an intelligence unit at Sars.

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