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Gordhan expected to meet with Mkhwebane over Ivan Pillay retirement package

Gordhan confirmed on Wednesday that Busisiwe Mkhwebane has subpoenaed him to appear before her next week as part of an investigation into the 2010 package offered to Ivan Pillay.

FILE: Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan. Picture: Lindsay Dentlinger/EWN

JOHANNESBURG – Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan is expected to meet with the Public Protector to explain his role in the early retirement package offered to a former South African Revenue Services (Sars) deputy commissioner.

Gordhan confirmed on Wednesday that Busisiwe Mkhwebane has subpoenaed him to appear before her next week as part of an investigation into the 2010 package offered to Ivan Pillay.

In a statement to the Zondo commission of inquiry, Gorhan describes the Public Protector's investigation as part of the "misuse and abuse of public powers for suspicious objectives".

Former National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) head Shaun Abrahams withdrew fraud charges against Gordhan and two former Sars officials, Oupa Magashula and Pillay, in 2016.

In an explosive statement expected to be submitted to the state capture inquiry next week, Gordhan says he believes the current investigation into the early retirement package offered to Ivan Pillay in 2010 is an abuse of power.

Just over a month ago, Gordhan was subpoenaed by the Public Protector to explain the approval of this package. The minister says that this is the same issue that he was criminally charged for in 2016.

Gordhan says he believes that the fightback is aimed at countering the work done by public servants and political office bearers to "re-capture" the state.

He has also expressed concern about intimidation, harassment and racism against those appearing before the Zondo Commission.

Gordhan says the cost of being honest is high for him personally, as well as for his family and colleagues but it’s a price paid to ensure that South Africa transforms from its apartheid past and its recently captured state.

(Edited by Leeto M Khoza)