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Zuma a threat to South Africa - de Klerk

Zuma a threat to South Africa - de Klerk

Former President FW de Klerk has labelled President Jacob Zuma a “threat to South Africa’s democracy” after it emerged this week that members of the government connected Gupta family offered cabinet position to a number of ministers.

In a statement issued on behalf of his foundation, de Klerk said the faction within the African National Congress (ANC) under Zuma’s leadership, is posing a serious threat to the country’s constitution by “seizing control of key state institutions for the promotion of their own personal and political agendas”.

“They are using these institutions to prosecute and intimidate opponents outside, who have had the courage to oppose and expose their unconstitutional activities. Now, they also wish to gain control of the Ministry of Finance and the Treasury, which they regard as some of the last obstacles in their path to the unfettered pursuit of their personal and political goals,” de Klerk said.

“Under this regime the floodgates of corruption have been thrown wide open. Business people associated with the ruling group, including the Gupta family, have, according to a number of credible sources, acquired substantial influence in the financial decisions of the state - and even in the appointment of key cabinet ministers”.

He also added that the shock dismissal of Nhlanhla Nene Nene in December last year and the ongoing saga involving the investigation of Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan by the Hawks, are pushing South Africa closer “to a catastrophic economic downgrade”.

Zuma has however denied the allegations that any ministers were appointed without his authority, telling Parliament on Thursday that “I am in charge of government, no minister here was ever appointed by the Guptas or anybody else. They were appointed by me”.