APPRECIATIVE: Business Leadership SA head Saki Macozoma. Picture: JEREMY GLYN
APPRECIATIVE: Business Leadership SA head Saki Macozoma. Picture: JEREMY GLYN

BUSINESS Leadership SA (BLSA) welcomed on Wednesday the African National Congress’s (ANC’s) investigation into the "capture of the state" by some businesses, but is concerned about the process.

Amid disclosures that friends of President Jacob Zuma, the Gupta family, had peddled Cabinet posts under conditions, the ANC’s national executive committee resolved last weekend that the office of the party’s secretary-general Gwede Mantashe would investigate the allegations that have been made.

"It is debatable whether the office of the secretary-general of the ANC is the appropriate place to exclusively gather this information and analyse it," Business Leadership SA president Saki Macozoma said.

The body last week called for decisive action from the ANC to restore confidence in the office of the president; to protect SA’s constitutional democracy and to promote the rule of law.

Senior party and government officials have confirmed they were made offers by members of the Gupta family.

The most prominent was Deputy Finance Minister Mcebisi Jonas who said he had been offered the job of finance minister even before Nhlanhla Nene was fired from the position.

"Besides the fact that many of the allegations involve the officials of the ANC and Cabinet members, consideration needs to be taken as to how individuals who are not members of the ANC can participate in this discovery process," Mr Macozoma said.

"Such individuals include civil servants, business people and executives of the state owned companies. They should be enabled to provide information through a channel they may feel more comfortable with," he said.

Business people remained concerned and disturbed as undue and illegitimate influence and interference in the state was "a clear and present danger", Banking Association of SA’s MD Cas Coovadia said on Wednesday.

"We must be clear that ‘state and corporate capture’ is a euphemism for blatant corruption and is not in keeping with the central tenets of our constitutional democracy," he said.

The association welcomed the ANC’s statement of confidence in Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan and that no action would be taken against Mr Jonas for "doing the honourable thing".

It also said others who did so too should be afforded the same "immunity and protection".