The Citizen (KZN)

Gordhan’s SAA deal lost in mist

- Midrand Mike

Sydney Majoko says that Pravin Gordhan’s “crime is bravery”. (The Citizen, 19 March) and I admit he makes a lot of valid arguments. I am unfortunat­ely unable to agree entirely.

Why? Simply too much missing informatio­n to fully connect the dots.

Informatio­n such as what was said in the meeting when Gordhan made everyone sign an NDA?

Were there special conditions in the agreement – a polite way of saying pay-offs, or donations, or other forms of reward in the agreement?

It has been reported that after agreeing to the deal in 2021, the ANC asking price from the proposed 51% buyers, Takatso, had increased dramatical­ly.

That supposed increase in price is a lot less than SAA will now cost taxpayers in future bailouts so, on a financial basis, it would seem the original agreement is still a better option for the country than walking away from the deal.

Other questions are why did Gordhan announce his retirement shortly after?

Was he pushed out due to the failure to conclude the deal and possibly deliver certain rewards for certain people, or the organisati­on?

Maybe he was pushed out by a faction not part of that particular “loyalty programme”?

Over the past 30 years the ANC has not exactly shown itself to be above such arrangemen­ts, or to have the best interests of the economy and the country at heart.

The likelihood of the ANC needing to finalise the deal and push it through the rubber-stamp process before the elections or be forced to give up on it are indeed real.

There are too many questions, too much questionab­le timing and far too little transparen­cy for me to agree unreserved­ly with Majoko’s theories.

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