State Security to probe report Zuma cited for firing Pravin Gordhan

State Security Minister David Mahlobo
Picture: Embassy of the Republic of South Africa

The Department of State Security will look into the intelligence report which President Jacob Zuma used to justify his decision to fire Pravin Gordhan as finance minister‚ and his deputy Mcebisi Jonas.

This is according to Minister of State Security David Mahlobo‚ who briefed reporters on Friday evening after a day of nationwide marches against Zuma. Notable protests took place in cities including Johannesburg‚ Tshwane‚ Durban and Cape Town.

He briefed media in Pretoria alongside Minister of Communications Ayanda Dlodlo and Minister of Defence and Military Veterans Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula as part of the justice and security cluster.

The ministers said about 60 000 people had demonstrated against Zuma on the day. Police in Cape Town tallied as much as 100 000 protesters in the city. When asked about the report‚ Mahlobo said his department was probing it.

“No one can say that the president has broken the law when conducting a reshuffle. To suggest that the minister of intelligence should be bothered with police‚ intelligence‚ defence intelligence and other forms. I have asked my people to look at the intelligence report that is said to be floating around‚” Mahlobo said.

Mapisa-Nqakula said two people were reported to have been hospitalised in Johannesburg and one was arrested in Pietermaritzburg.

Regarding the gathering of uMkhonto weSizwe Military Veterans Association (MKMVA) members outside Luthuli House‚ which might have violated sections of the Regulation of Gatherings Act‚ she said the police should investigate.

“I would imagine that the police being the ones responsible for criminal investigation be the ones to look into the conduct of the MKMVA and that if any criminal activity is found‚ I am sure that the law will take its course‚” Mapisa-Nqakula said.

Mahlobo also touched on the protest outside of the Gupta residence in Saxonwold‚ Johannesburg‚ where a stun grenade was released.

“The situation in Saxonwold started [Friday] afternoon and we continue to monitor the situation. We have to ensure that the law is observed. Worse yet‚ we must ensure that people’s private property is not trespassed into‚” he said.

Regarding Fitch’s downgrade of SA‚ the second international credit rating downgrade the country has suffered in the space of a week‚ Minister Dlodlo urged South Africans to give the newly appointed ministers a fair chance to prove themselves in their new positions.

“Up to seven people were shuffled out in the cabinet changes. But there is so much attention that is paid to just two people. It is unfair on the men and women that have been appointed to tar them with a brush that taints their integrity‚” Dlodlo said.

– TMG Digital/BusinessLIVE

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