‘ANC members who’ve been approached by Guptas need to come forward’

The Guptas insist they have never offered a government job to anyone.

FILE: ANC Secretary General Gwede Mantashe. Picture: EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - While the Guptas have challenged Deputy Finance Minister Mcebisi Jonas and Former African National Congress (ANC) Member of Parliament Vytjie Mentor to prove their claims of undue influence by the family, the ANC says attributing the allegations to factional battles in the party is arrogant.

The Guptas insist they've never offered a government job to anyone and say Jonas and Mentor should prove their claims in court.

ANC Secretary General Gwede Mantashe has called on more ANC officials who have been offered positions or influenced by the Guptas to come forward.

Despite the growing number of serving and former government officials coming forward to back up claims about the Gupta's influence, the family continues to deny this.

Mantashe told eNCA that blaming factions within the ANC is shifting the blame.

"I looked at that and came to the conclusion that it is an arrogance of power when you think they have an undue influence on you and the company; you say many things about the organisation… you don't respect it and you can say anything. That is arrogance."

While Mentor says she wants police to protect her family, Mantashe says government has a responsibility to make sure Jonas is kept safe.

The deputy minister says he received a threatening text message just before revealing he was offered a ministerial job yesterday afternoon.

'RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN BUSINESS SECTOR AND THE STATE IS DAMAGED'

The South African Chamber of Commerce and Industry (Sacci) says the Gupta job offer revelation by the deputy minister has damaged the relationship between the business sector and the State and destroyed the trust.

Sacci says it hopes Jonas's refusal is encouraging.

It says it hopes this will dispel perceptions that the South African government conducts its business through private individuals.

Sacci President Vusi Khumalo congratulated Jonas has demonstrated his integrity.

Khumalo says the revelation has raised serious concern within the investment fraternity.

In a statement released this afternoon government says it's committed to ensuring that the country works together to avoid a credit rating downgrade.

The statement makes no mention of claims by the deputy finance or the Gupta's.