ANC chief whip Jackson Mthembu has added his objection to the removal of Pravin Gordhan as minister of finance, and his deputy Mcebisi Jonas. He took particularly issue with the reported reasons for their removal, based on an intelligence report dubbed Operation Checkmate that said the pair and their team were mobilising foreign business and interests against President Jacob Zuma.
I disagree with the removal of Gordhan & Jonas based on a suspect intelligence report . Their committment to the NDR is unquestionable .— Jackson Mthembu (@JacksonMthembu_) March 31, 2017
Pravin & Jonas will never sell their soul and country to foreign forces . That is plain rubbish . Their crime is their incorruptibility.— Jackson Mthembu (@JacksonMthembu_) March 31, 2017
Their other crime is defence and protection of our public purse with highest levels of integrity and morality . We stand with them .— Jackson Mthembu (@JacksonMthembu_) March 31, 2017
The former ANC spokesperson has been increasingly vocally critical of Zuma, accusing him of using state resources to fight Gordhan.
His comments mirror those of ANC and the country's deputy president Cyril Ramaphosa.
He is also an NEC member and has clashed with Zuma loyalists in that forum previously.