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Siphiwe Nyanda says refusal to meet the Guptas led to his axing

Former Communications Minister Siphiwe Nyanda says the Guptas made repeated requests through emissaries to meet with him outside his office.

FILE: Former Communications Minister Siphiwe Nyanda. Picture: Supplied.

JOHANNESBURG - Former Communications Minister Siphiwe Nyanda has told the state capture commission about his encounters with the Gupta family, saying after he repeatedly refused to meet them outside his office he was fired from Cabinet.

Nyanda appeared before the inquiry on Thursday after former Finance Minister Trevor Manuel concluded his testimony.

He confirmed Manuel’s testimony, saying he was also present at the African national congress (ANC) national executive committee (NEC) meeting in 2011 when Fikile Mbalula complained that a Gupta brother knew about his imminent ministerial appointment, even before the ANC head of elections found out.

WATCH: Manuel details Mbalula's links with the Guptas

Manuel told the commission that Mbalula was tearful and emotional when he made the confession and appeared concerned about the Guptas influence on government.

Nyanda says, when he was communications minister, a Gupta brother and Jacob Zuma’s son Duduzane came to his office.

“They introduced their company, Sahara Computers, and after that introduction, they left.”

He says after that, the Guptas made repeated requests through emissaries to meet with him outside his office.

“They sent people they knew had contact with me... they would tell me ‘these guys want to see you’ and I would say no.”

Nyanda says what followed after that was his removal as a minister.

He says that’s why Mbalula‘s revelation that the Guptas knew about his ministerial appointment confirmed to him that the Guptas may have had a hand in his axing.

(Edited by Zamangwane Shange)

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