South African finance minister quits cabinet over Gupta links

Nhlanhla Nene is SA's minister of finance. Again

The Guptas, who face numerous allegations of using their friendship with former leader Jacob Zuma for mutual self-enrichment, have consistently denied any wrongdoing.

Nene's spokesperson‚ Jabulani Sikhakhane‚ was not available for comment. "I deeply regret these lapses and beg your forgiveness".

Ramaphosa, a former deputy president, brought Nene back into the Cabinet after replacing the scandal-tainted Zuma, who resigned in February.

Nene has also been praised by commentators for standing up to Zuma.

In a nationally televised address, Ramaphosa said he accepted Nene's resignation because of "errors of judgment" as a result of a controversy surrounding Nene's testimony in an ongoing graft inquiry in South Africa.

"I have made a decision to accept his resignation", Ramaphosa told a televised press briefing in Cape Town.

"This is very positive for South Africa because it shows how serious the new government under Cyril Ramaphosa is about dealing with corruption and even the perception of corruption and dishonesty", said Nathan, who was a leading analyst before he founded 10X, a disruptive asset manager.

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Former SA Reserve Bank governor and newly appointed Minister of Finance Tito Mboweni is highly accomplished and should be able to hit the ground running. Many ministers in his cabinet and the previous Zuma cabinets have held meetings with the Guptas, and some have provided favours to the family.

Nene revealed that he had met the Guptas at their Saxonwold home no less than five times during his tenures as deputy finance minister and during the early stages of his first stint as finance minister.

Until the latest revelations, Mr. Nene was widely seen as a hero of the resistance to corruption. Five months after refusing to sign a letter of guarantee that would have given the project to Russia's state-controlled nuclear energy company, Mr. Nene was sacked from Mr. Zuma's cabinet and was briefly replaced by a pro-Gupta minister.

Apart from serving as Reserve Bank governor, Mboweni also served as labour minister under late president Nelson Mandela.

The alleged breach relates to allegations surrounding a Public Investment Corporation investment in S&S Refinarias‚ reportedly including a $1.7-million "referral fee"‚ which may have benefited the minister's son‚ Siyabonga Nene. It said Nene's conduct in meetings with members of the Gupta family had been "unethical conduct of lying and misleading the public about his relations with the Gupta criminal syndicate".

For the EFF, Nene's position as finance minister is no longer tenable and they are determined to win what they are now calling a battle.

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