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Mapaila Tells IGI That Zuma Lied Over Reasons For Gordhan's Firing

The SACP leader says Zuma lied about an intelligence report which he said was the reason Gordhan had to be fired.

17/07/2017 06:17 SAST | Updated 17/07/2017 07:29 SAST
Sumaya Hisham / Reuters

The SACP's second deputy secretary general, Solly Mapaila, has deposed an affidavit saying that President Jacob Zuma lied about the reasons he axed former finance minister, Pravin Gordhan, eNCA reported on Monday.

Speaking at a panel discussion on corruption at Lilliesleaf farm on Sunday night, Mapaila said he had given an affidavit to the Inspector General of intelligence, saying Zuma lied when he told the SACP that he had fired Gordhan over a so-called intelligence report in March. That report alleged that Gordhan and his deputy, Mcebisi Jonas, were involved in a regime change plot. Zuma apparently told a meeting of alliance leaders that that was why he needed to fire them.

It was reported that Gordhan, deputy president Cyril Ramaphosa and SACP members met with Zuma before his March 30 cabinet reshuffle, where they were told hjs decision was based on "an intelligence report".

But Mapaila said on Sunday that Zuma had lied about this.

"You can't be in the revolutionary movement and not be honest. I have noticed many lies being told by the President. That's why I can say now in public for the first time that I've deposed an affidavit.... he lied to us, or how could he tell us the truth and lie to the public? So I had to take that step which I felt is important that we bring him to the commitment of our movement," Mapaila was quoted by eNCA as saying.

At a press briefing shortly after he was fired, Gordhan rubbished the report.

According to IOL, he said, "This is the so-called intelligence report, which says, among others, that the two of us and the director-general are involved in the massive conspiracy of undermining the economy of this country. And if you read this, it is absolute nonsense."

In April, News24 reported that the Inspector General was investigating the source of the so-called intelligence report. The report allegedly showed how Gordhan and others had the backing of international finance institutions to bring down Zuma's government.

On March 31, DA MP David Maynier wrote to the IGI asking for an investigation into whether the report was produced or disseminated by someone within the national intelligence structure. The IGI's legal advisor, Jay Govender, confirmed to Maynier that the investigation was underway.