State cap­ture: don’t fo­cus on one fam­ily


YOUR re­cent front page ar­ti­cle “Gord­han warns of Gupta in­flu­ence on ju­di­ciary” (Novem­ber 9) has left me with more ques­tions than an­swers.

I have no ob­jec­tion to a com­mis­sion of en­quiry into state cap­ture but it should not only fo­cus on one fam­ily.

There is a dic­tum in law that “ei in­cum­bat

pro­ba­tio qui af­frimat, non qui negat” – i.e. the bur­den of prov­ing an al­le­ga­tion is on the party mak­ing it.

It serves no pur­pose in mak­ing wild, un­sub­stan­ti­ated al­le­ga­tions in pub­lic or in books – the cor­rect and only law­ful pro­ce­dure is to lay crim­i­nal charges with prima fa­cie ev­i­dence at a po­lice sta­tion and to tes­tify un­der oath in court about what you know on the ev­i­dence (not what you heard via other sources or read about in the me­dia).

If for­mer min­is­ter Pravin Gord­han is se­ri­ous about state cap­ture, he will as­sist our law en­force­ment agen­cies in track­ing those in­volved in the il­licit flow of money out of our coun­try.

The au­di­tor-gen­eral, in his re­port tabled in Par­lia­ment, ac­knowl­edged a fes­ter­ing prob­lem vis-à-vis cap­i­tal be­ing il­le­gally trans­ferred out of South Africa.

Global Fi­nan­cial In­tegrity, a Wash­ing­ton re­search and ad­vo­cacy group was more blunt and re­ported that South Africa had lost more than R1.5 tril­lion in il­licit fi­nan­cial flows be­tween 2003 and the end of 2012 alone.

Is it not cor­rup­tion and state cap­ture when money leaves our coun­try il­le­gally?

The Hawks, the NPA and our ju­di­ciary should also fo­cus on those fam­i­lies and cor­po­rate com­pa­nies who ben­e­fited from the state’s cof­fers prior to to our democ­racy in 1994. The award­ing of 40-year Eskom con­tracts as we were head­ing to­wards our first demo­cratic elec­tions be­ing just one case in point.

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