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NPA has no time frame on decision to charge Gordhan

Pravin Gordhan refused to obey a demand by the Hawks to make a warning statement at their offices.

Pravin Gordhan.  Picture: Youtube

JOHANNESBURG - The National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) says there's no specific time period as to when it will decide whether or not to charge Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan and others in relation to a controversial spy unit.

Exactly two weeks ago, Gordhan refused to obey a demand by the Hawks to make a warning statement at their offices.

The Hawks are investigating a covert unit set up at South African Revenue Services (Sars) when Gordhan headed the organisation and initially indicated that the minister was not a suspect.

It's unclear when or if Gordhan will face charges, as it's now squarely in the hands of the NPA, who say they are looking into the evidence presented by the Hawks.

The Hawks say they cannot speak further on the matter.

Gordhan's lawyers released a statement last week saying they had responded to the Hawks request for a warning statement and indicated that they would be available to assist with any further information that may be required.

At the same time, Freedom Under Law and the Helen Suzman Foundation are seeking a court interdict to prevent the NPA and the Hawks from arresting Gordhan without sufficient notification.

This week the African National Congress' Treasurer-General Zweli Mkhize emphasised that the governing party and its leaders all supported Gordhan.

The Economic Freedom Fighters, however, has raised concerns about the minister's business interests, saying he has shares in all the businesses imaginable and that the issue should be investigated.

For now, Gordhan continues with his work but the charges he faces have caused concern for some investors, particularly Futuregrowth which will stop lending money to six state-owned companies, including Eskom.

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