Essop Pahad better placed to explain Gupta link - Mbeki

Thabo Mbeki has denied claims he introduced the controversial Gupta family to President Zuma.

FILE. Former South African President Thabo Mbeki. Picture: Facebook.

JOHANNESBURG - Former President Thabo Mbeki says a minister who served alongside him is better placed to explain why one of the Gupta brothers was appointed to the organisation now known as Brand SA.

Yesterday, Mbeki denied he introduced the controversial Gupta family to President Jacob Zuma and said none of the brothers served as advisers to him.

Mbeki also published his latest open letter, dealing with the recent Nkandla ruling by the Constitutional Court.

The former president says, rightly or wrongly, former minister in the Presidency Essop Pahad thought Ajay Gupta had the skills and knowledge to serve on the board of what was then the International Marketing Council.

He says if he wishes to, Pahad can elaborate on his decision.

Mbeki says claims that he introduced the Guptas to Zuma are 'false' and for the sake of argument, even if they aren't, Zuma would still have used his ethical judgment to determine his relationship with the family.

The former president has not taken a public stance on whether the man who defeated him in Polokwane should remain president following the Constitutional Court's Nkandla ruling.

Meanwhile, the whereabouts of brothers Ajay and Atul Gupta, who are believed to have fled the country, are still in question following their sudden resignation from their company last week.

According to a Reuters report, Oakbay Investments will be talking to four banks this week to give assurance of its good governance and practice.

Last month, allegations of interference surfaced from top government officials who claimed the Gupta family meddled in Cabinet appointments.

The family has since been accused of unduly benefiting from its relationship with Zuma.

LISTEN: Are the Gupta brothers gone for good?

To read Mbeki's full statement click here.