What's next in the Gordhan-Mkhwebane saga?

Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane has invoked special circumstances to investigate allegations of improper conduct against Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan.

The minister's legal team wants her to set out these special circumstances regarding claims about his involvement in the so-called rogue unit within the South African Revenue Service (Sars).

Gordhan was the commissioner of Sars until 2009.

While Mkhwebane has extended the deadline for the minister to respond to these claims, she says she's been given information about an alleged meeting between Gordhan and Sars to co-ordinate their response.

She subpoenaed the minister to make submissions to her office following a complaint by Floyd Shivambu, the deputy president of the Economic Freedom Fighters .

EWN's Barry Bateman brings us up to speed on the matter.

Pravin Gordhan has been given this extension until next week Friday to make his submission on the allegations of his involvement in establishing the so-called rogue unit dating all the way back to 2007.

Barry Bateman, Reporter - EWN

One of the reasons Gordhan cited for asking for the extension is that Sars itself is seeking legal advice - the revenue collector is finding out if it is in fact legally permissible for it to share certain information which relates to taxpayers' information.

He also wants to know what the exceptional circumstances are under which he can be be investigated - in normal circumstances, there is a two-year limitation on enquiries.

There is a provision which allows the Public Protector to investigate a matter which could date back many years if there are these exceptional circumstances. Gordhan is saying, tell us what those exceptional circumstances are.

Barry Bateman, Reporter - EWN

Bateman points out that the Nugent Commission found there is no law prohibiting the establishment of units such as the one that became known as the rogue unit, within the revenue service.

They weren't conducting unlawful or clandestine interceptions.

Barry Bateman, Reporter - EWN

They were monitoring illicit trade in, for example cigarettes, and the illicit economy.

Barry Bateman, Reporter - EWN

Bateman also refers to speculation that the Public Protector is pursuing an agenda and her rejection of these allegations.

That this is being brought to the fore because Pravin Gordhan is part of the new government that is trying to investigate state capture.

Barry Bateman, Reporter - EWN

For more of this interesting discussion, listen below:


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