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ANC describes Zwane's statement as reckless and appalling

The ANC says President Jacob Zuma needs to discipline Mosebenzi Zwane in the harshest way possible.

Mineral Resources Minister, Mosebenzi Zwane. Picture: Dumelang Media.

JOHANNESBURG - The national African National Congress (ANC) has described the statement by Mineral Resources Minister Mosebenzi Zwane as reckless and appalling and has called on the president to discipline him harshly.

Last week, Zwane issued a statement claiming to be on behalf of cabinet, which called for a judicial inquiry to be established into the closing of the Gupta family's bank accounts.

The ANC says while it welcomes the presidency distancing itself from the pronouncement, President Jacob Zuma needs to discipline him in the harshest way possible.

The ANC's Zizi Kodwa says Zwane has brought the country into disrepute.

"Because that kind of a conduct that is sending away shocking misinterpretation of South Africa's standing in leadership in terms of investments and investors."

On Friday, Zwane's spokesperson Martin Madlala admitted in an interview that the statement they had released was misleading and was not on behalf of cabinet.

The governing party says Zwane's actions sent shockwaves through the markets and has described his actions as outrageous.

The ANC has called on the president to "discipline" and "reprimand" Zwane for his statement regarding an inquiry into the major banks.

Kodwa said, "We think it was not enough that the presidency distanced itself, and the cabinet, from that statement. The president must discipline Zwane."

CONTRADICTING MESSAGES MAY FRUSTRATE SA ECONOMY

Economists have warned that the contradicting messages from government over the Gupta family and an Inter-Ministerial Commission's recommendations regarding their bank accounts may further frustrate the markets.

Group chief economist at Standard Bank Goolam Ballim said, "South Africa has witnessed, over the last couple of weeks, conflicting voices emerging, not just from government but also from the party, clearly tensions, divisions and fights within the party is beginning to spill into government."

Economist Dawie Roodt said rating agencies are watching and taking note.

"The confusion that is going in government. The contradictions that we're getting from government, the total lack of leadership that we get from government is really something that we all need to be extremely concerned about."