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Gigaba facing uphill battle to get political career back on track, says analyst

Although he's quit his Cabinet post, former Home Affairs Minister Malusi Gigaba has not resigned as a Member of Parliament.

FILE: Former Home Affairs Minister Malusi Gigaba. Picture: Sethembiso Zulu/EWN

JOHANNESBURG – Although he's quit his Cabinet post, former Home Affairs Minister Malusi Gigaba has not resigned as a Member of Parliament.

The man once tipped as a future president of the African National Congress (ANC) and the country says he will now be fighting to clear his name.

But can he get his political career back on track?

Political analyst Ralph Mathekga says it could be an uphill battle.

“The sad thing with Gigaba is that one would say that he had quite a promising career. Unfortunately, too many mistakes resulted in a situation where he found himself where he is.”

Gigaba is the second minister in just over a month to resign from President Cyril Ramaphosa’s Cabinet.

His successor as Finance Minister, Nhlanhla Nene, resigned only a few months into his second stint in the portfolio after admitting at the Zondo commission of inquiry to lying about his meetings with the Gupta brothers.

Gigaba has consistently maintained that he had no hand in the Gupta’s state capture project.

But with evidence of impropriety stacking up against him in recent weeks, it appears he had no choice but to jump before he was pushed.

Gigaba has appeared before two state capture inquiries in Parliament, saying that his relations with the Gupta family extended to mere pleasantries.

He’s denied making appointments to the boards of SOEs to facilitate state capture or that he smoothed the way for the family’s early naturalisation.

But it appears that lying under oath in a matter involving the Oppenheimer’s private aviation terminal Fireblade proved to be his undoing.

President Cyril Ramaphosa was given Wednesday as a deadline by the Public Protector to act against Gigaba for that transgression.

The Council for the Advancement of the Constitution's Lawson Naidoo says Gigaba made the right move.

“It’s time that leaders who fall out of line take responsibility for their actions and do the honourable thing and leave public life.”

If Gigaba remains an MP, he could still have to face Parliament’s ethics committee.

(Edited by Leeto M Khoza)