Ajay Gupta and the art of bla­tant ar­ro­gance

CityPress - - News - – S’thembile Cele

Rev­e­la­tions in for­mer pub­lic pro­tec­tor Thuli Madon­sela’s State of Cap­ture re­port point to Ajay Gupta’s over­bear­ing stance in his de­ter­mi­na­tion to get what he wanted from state of­fi­cials. Here are a few ex­am­ples:

“I will talk to your se­niors in govern­ment and you will be sorted out,” Ajay Gupta al­legedly told Themba Maseko, the for­mer chief ex­ec­u­tive of the Govern­ment Com­mu­ni­ca­tion and In­for­ma­tion Sys­tem, on the phone.

The re­buke oc­curred soon af­ter Maseko met with two of the Gupta brothers, in­clud­ing Ajay, to en­sure govern­ment ad­ver­tis­ing would be chan­nelled to The New Age news­pa­per, the Gup­tas’ new ven­ture. When Maseko told Ajay at the meet­ing that he did not con­trol the en­tire ad­ver­tis­ing bud­get, Ajay brushed the ob­jec­tion aside.

And, in his in­ter­view with Madon­sela, Deputy Fi­nance Min­is­ter Mce­bisi Jonas said there were “no pleas­antries” when he met with the Gup­tas. Ajay got down to busi­ness, telling him Trea­sury was a “stum­bling block” to his in­ter­ests and adding, with ap­par­ent con­fi­dence, that he could make Jonas the fi­nance min­is­ter. Ajay also told Jonas the Gup­tas’ had in­tel­li­gence on him – al­lud­ing to Jonas’ al­leged close ties with ANC sec­re­tary-gen­eral Gwede Man­tashe and trea­surer-gen­eral Zweli Mkhize.

Present at the meet­ing were its two ini­tia­tors, the pres­i­dent’s son Duduzane Zuma and busi­ness­man Fana Hlong­wane. How­ever, the re­port says, nei­ther said a word, leav­ing all the talk­ing to Ajay.

OUT­SPO­KEN Ajay (left) and Atul Gupta

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from South Africa

© PressReader. All rights reserved.