Second call for Guptas to be investigated after Dubai mansion purchase

BY CHARL BOSCH - MAY 9, 2016

The Democratic Alliance (DA) has made a renewed call for the Financial Intelligence Centre (FIG) to investigate whether the controversial Gupta family illegally transferred huge amounts of the money out of South Africa.

This comes after a CityPress article on Sunday revealed that the family, who left the country in April for the United Arab Emirates following wide-spread reports of interfering with state affairs, forked out R448-million for the purchase of a ten bedroom mansion in Dubai’s exclusive Emirates Hills.

According to the article, the 40 000 foot square mansion was put up for sale in March last year and advertised that the intended buyer must be a “VVIP with deep pockets”.

It also states that the words Gupta and Saharanpur, the latter referring to the birth place of Ajay, Atul and Rajesh Gupta in the Indian province of Utter Pradesh, had been inscribed on the entrance gates, as well as a website registered to family’s Sahara Computers venture in Saxonworld, Johannesburg.

Speaking in a statement, DA Shadow Minister of Finance David Maynier said the party’s original request for FIG Director Murray Mitchell to investigate the Guptas has so far failed to be addressed, as has a direct reply by Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan.

“We have therefore, submitted a parliamentary question probing whether the Financial Intelligence Centre is conducting an investigation into whether the Guptas illegally moved assets, including large amounts of cash, out of South Africa,” Maynier said.

“The reply will hopefully end weeks of zig-zagging around the Financial Intelligence Centre and the request for an investigation into the Guptas. To sit back and do nothing would amount to allowing an accused to flee the crime scene, with the proceeds of the crime”.