'What took big banks so long to shut Gupta accounts?', Pieter-Louis Myburgh asks
It's alleged that two Cabinet ministers tried to convince Standard Bank to keep the Gupta accounts open.
This is according to the head of compliance for Standard Bank, Ian Sinton, who testified at the state capture inquiry on Monday.
Sinton named former Mineral Resources Minister Mosebenzi Zwane and Labour Minister Mildred Oliphant as two senior ANC members who pressured the institution to break the law.
News24 investigative journalist Pieter-Louis Myburgh says Monday's allegations revealed a concerted effort from the ANC to aid the Gupta cause.
A 2016 letter has also emerged showing Standard Bank outline the resolutions of a meeting with ANC members at Luthuli House.
This 2016 letter from Standard Bank to Gwede Manatashe shows that AT BEST some of the banks feared losing business and so chose not to speak out against bullying (which isn't admirable) & at worst some banks were actively COMPLICIT in their ruthless pursuit of "maximising value". pic.twitter.com/c8QzPHx0nT— Eusebius McKaiser (@Eusebius) September 17, 2018
Myburgh says while the ANC is not technically on trial at the state capture inquiry, the governing party is inextricably linked to investigations.
He says it is disingenuous for the ANC to try sperate itself from the state capture inquiry.
On Tuesday, banking officials from Absa and FNB will testify at the state capture inquiry about their decision to close the Guptas’ bank accounts.
Myburgh says other banking executives need to be questioned about their potential complicitness in the Gupta saga.
Big, bad ANC vs the “good guy” banks? It’s a little more complex than that. The FIC-flagged suspicious #Gupta transactions started showing up in 2012. Why did the banks wait until 2016 - after the Mentor and Jonas revelations - to close the family’s accounts? #Standardbank #Zondo— Pieter-Louis Myburgh (@PLMyburgh) September 17, 2018
He says it is important to ask why the big banks only decided to cut ties with the Gupta-linked accounts in 2016, despite so many prior warning signals.
What yesterday's testimony showed us is that state capture is something that had to go hand-in-hand with party capture.Pieter-Louis Myburgh, Investigative reporter at News24
To draw this distinction between the ANC and the Executive, in terms of the state capture problem, is disingenuous and unhelpful.Pieter-Louis Myburgh, Investigative reporter at News24
The big banks are now, very conveniently, in the victim/good-guy camp in terms of this Gupta narrative.Pieter-Louis Myburgh, Investigative reporter at News24
Only in 2016, after the Vytjie Mentor and Mcebisi Jonas revelations, did the banks all of the sudden decide that the public sentiment is too strong against the Gupta family. It was a good business decision to part ways with them.Pieter-Louis Myburgh, Investigative reporter at News24
Why were they so happy to bank with the Guptas in the period between 2010 and 2016?Pieter-Louis Myburgh, Investigative reporter at News24
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