Claims have emerged over the past weeks that the Gupta family met with Deputy Finance Minister Mcebisi Jonas at their home in Saxonwold a few weeks before Nhlanhla Nene was removed as minister of finance. There they allegedly offered him the job, but he turned them down.
President Zuma then appointed Des van Rooyen to the post before being forced by those within the ANC to replace him with stalwart Pravin Gordhan.
Stephen Grootes chatted to Business Day's associate political editor Sam Mkokeli about whether there is any truth in all these rumours. The relationship between Jacob Zuma and the Gupta family has been fueled by many stories over the years says Mkokeli.
From the moment he was fired by Thabo Mbeki as the Deputy President of the republic, he started spending more time with that family and also Mr Zuma's own family worked for them.— Sam Mkokeli , Business Day's associate political editor
A lot of people in the ANC are uncomfortable about the perception that President Zuma is quite close to the family and also that the decisions of his government are being influenced by that.— Sam Mkokeli , Business Day's associate political editor
With regard to the President's appointment of Des van Rooyen as Finance Minister, Mkokeli says the impact and damage of that decision is still being felt.
He said at a recent meeting with journalists that he will very soon explain why he appointed van Rooyen. Good luck with that,— Sam Mkokeli , Business Day's associate political editor
This article first appeared on 702 : President Zuma and the Guptas - fact or fiction?