Chamber of Mines ‘deeply concerned’

The Chamber of Mines says it is deeply concerned about the state of public institutions in South Africa and will raise the matter with the Presidency.

The chamber of mines noted with concern the announcement by the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) of its decision to charge the Minister of Finance‚ Pravin Gordhan‚ in relation to alleged fraud as part of an ongoing investigation into allegations around the South African Revenue Service.“The

Chamber’s view is that no individual is above the rule of the law. At the same time‚ legal means should not be used to opportunistically pursue allegedly nefarious agendas under the guise of justice and due process‚” it stated.

Meanwhile‚ the Helen Suzman Foundation (HZF) said it agreed with the Deputy President‚ Cyril Ramaphosa‚ who was reported as having urged that nothing must be done to cause problems or difficulties in state institutions such as the Treasury‚ or to damage the country’s economic future.

“One implication is that Mr Gordhan should not be removed from his office on the grounds of the accusation against him. A second implication is that‚ if the charges are found to be without merit‚ the National Prosecuting Authority will have damaged the economy for no good reason‚” the HZF warned.

As in the case of the dismissal of Minister Nene in December 2015‚ the reaction to the accusation of Gordhan had been an immediate depreciation of the rand‚ it said‚ adding that further decline in domestic and foreign confidence in a weak South African economy would follow. “The accusation against Mr Gordhan takes place against the backdrop of a wider crisis of governance in South Africa. Alertness to the quality of our constitutional democracy‚ always important‚ is essential at present‚” the foundation said.

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