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Gigaba, former ministers could testify in Parly probe into Gupta naturalisation

The former ministers include Mangosuthu Buthelezi, and current Defence and Military Veterans Minister Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula.

FILE: Home Affairs Minister Malusi Gigaba. Picture: GCIS

CAPE TOWN - Former ministers of Home Affairs, as well as the current minister, Malusi Gigaba, could be called to testify in Parliament’s inquiry into the naturalisation of members of the Gupta family.

These include Mangosuthu Buthelezi, and current Defence and Military Veterans Minister Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula.

Buthelezi was in charge of the portfolio for 10 years from 1994, when Atul Gupta was first given permits to live and work in South Africa. Mapisa-Nqakula served from 2004 to 2009.

Parliament’s Home Affairs committee received a draft report on allegations of state capture and the granting of citizenship to Gupta family members on Tuesday.

The committee is set to discuss the detailed report on Wednesday.

Chairperson Hlomane Chauke said: “We wanted to go deeper, we wanted to go as far as the first ministers who were in charge of the department, meaning the accounting authority, the political accounting authority who were in charge of this department when this particular family and individuals arrived in South Africa. It’s very important.”

Other potential witnesses include former senior officials of the department and Gupta business associates, including former Sahara Computers CEO Ashu Chawla and former Oakbay Group CEO Nazeem Howa.

The report flags a number of discrepancies and questions relating to permits and processes for the Guptas and their employees, including the influence they were apparently able to wield over Home Affairs.

(Edited by Shimoney Regter)