Former anti-apartheid activist Peter Hain welcomes UK sanctions on Guptas

Ajay, Atul and Rajesh Gupta and their associate Salim Essa are included on a list of 22 individuals who've had sanctions imposed on them for their role in corruption.

FILE: Former President Jacob Zuma (centre) seen with Atul Gupta (left) and former Home Affairs Minister Malusi Gigaba (right). Picture: GCIS

CAPE TOWN - Former anti-apartheid activist Peter Hain has welcomed the imposition by the UK of travel bans and asset freezes against the Gupta family.

On Monday UK Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab announced the UK’s first sanctions under the new Global Anti-Corruption regime.

Raab said the measures aimed to stop those involved in serious corruption from entering and channeling money through Britain, adding that corruption hurt individuals and undermined global trade.

He vowed to stop “corrupt individuals”, including the infamous Gupta family, from using that country as a safe haven for what he called their “dirty money”.

READ: UK imposes travel bans and asset freezes on Gupta family, Salim Essa

Ajay, Atul and Rajesh Gupta and their associate Salim Essa are included on a list of 22 individuals who've had sanctions imposed on them for their role in corruption.

The sanctions include asset freezes and travel bans.

South African banks have severed ties with the Guptas, but there's still no word on whether they'll ever face justice here.

The UK government - on the other hand - is taking action.

In 2017‚ Hain wrote to the Chancellor of the Exchequer, Philip Hammond, asking him to urge law enforcement agencies to track down about R7 billion thought to have been laundered through the Guptas’ networks and to return it to South Africa.

Four years later, the UK seems to be heeding the call and has hit the Guptas with sanctions.

Hain said it was important because up until now, people like the Guptas had been able to escape justice fairly easily.

"Now they will not be able to travel into the UK, they will not be allowed to travel anywhere where the UK could execute an international arrest warrant, and also very importantly, they will not be able to use banks that have London offices."

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