Is S.A's cabinet overreaching in the banks and Guptas' saga?


The South African government assigned Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan, Labour Minister Mildred Oliphant and Mineral Resources Minister, Mosebenzi Zwane, to “engage” with the big-four banks that have cut ties with the Guptas.

The Gupta family has been at the centre of controversy in South Africa with allegations including state capture and having a corrupt relationship with some senior government officials.

Some of the banks that have severed ties with the Guptas include Barclays Africa andFNB.


The move came after it emerged that the Guptas had an undue influence on appointments to President Jacob Zuma’s cabinet which some argue was influencing the business relations between government and the family.

Terry Boysen, Chief Executive Officer of the CGF Research Institute says the ethical component was a main issue to this developing story. He also added that, central to that, was the question of who was benefiting from this intervention by three cabinet ministers.

He also said that the resolution was supposed to have been left to the central bank that is responsible for regulating banks.

“The government should pull out from those discussions and leave it to the regulator to address this issue. These are private business with own rules and regulations and may have reasons that might require the termination of the relationship.”

Russell Loubser, former Chief Executive Officer of the JSE weighed in questioning the priorities of the government. He said there was need to address underlying problems that have landed South Africa in the space where it finds herself and said, chief among them was corruption.

“We are diverting attention from a real issue who are now focusing on finding a solution to the Gupats’ issue. There has been a complete lack of corporate governance in the entire government,” said Loubser.

For more on this, watch CNBC Africa’s interview with Russell Loubser and Terry Boysen below.