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Rand takes a hard knock over Gupta controversy

The rand broke through the R16 to the dollar mark & continued to drop throughout yesterday.

The South African rand. Picture: Craig Wynn/EWN.
Gupta family,Gupta,Moodys Investors Service,SA rand drops,junk status
Local Business

JOHANNESBURG – While Deputy Finance Minister Mcebisi Jonas’s revelations about the Guptas have been met with fresh calls for a judicial inquiry, the rand broke through the R16 to the dollar mark and continued to drop throughout yesterday.

At one point, the local currency reached R16,24 to the dollar. 

The rand’s weakness comes at a time when ratings agency Moody’s is in the country to assess whether it should downgrade South Africa’s credit rating, in line with that of fellow agencies Fitch and S&P.

At the moment the rand is sitting at R15,67 to the dollar.

It’s also worth noting that today the South African Reserve Bank is due to announce its latest interest rate decision, something South Africans will be watching closely in an already difficult economic climate.

As expected, political analysts have had a lot to say about the latest developments. 

Analyst Ralph Mathekga says Zuma's credibility is at its lowest and it's now up to the African National Congress (ANC) to decide on his future.

“It still remains the prerogative of the ANC to actually look into this and assess whether they’re still comfortable with Jacob Zuma representing them as president of the country.”

From here on out, all eyes will be on Parliament where the next chapter of this story will play out.

WATCH: Mcebisi Jonas on being offered a job by the Guptas

To view today's EWN cartoon on this contentious saga, click here.

Late yesterday after days of speculation, Jonas confirmed he met with members of the Gupta family, who made him an offer.

“Members of the Gupta family offered me the position of minister of finance, to replace then minister, Nene. I rejected this out of hand. The basis of my rejection of their offer is that it makes a mockery of our hard-earned democracy, the trust of our people, and no one but the president of the republic appoints ministers.”

To read the deputy minister's full statement, click here.

(Edited Tamsin Wort)

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