It’s all a political plot to stop me from becoming president, says Gigaba

Former Home Affairs minister Malusi Gigaba. File photo

The minister says ‘militant comrades’ will defend him against what he believes is an attempt to stop his rise to power.

The many problems that befell Home Affairs Minister Malusi Gigaba in the past weeks are, according to the minister, caused by those trying to stop him rising to become the leader of the ANC, which would then lead to him becoming state president, IOL reports.

His many woes have included the release of a sex tape, the dismissal by the ConCourt of an attempt to appeal a ruling that he had lied under oath regarding the Fireblade aviation scandal, public protector Mkhwebane recommending he be disciplined over that same scandal, and a draft report which Business Day says implicates him in state capture alongside Lynne Brown.

Gigaba has been on a mission to defend himself in the media. According to him: “When this concentration of fury on a single individual happens, it cannot be linked with anything else, it has to be linked with the fear that he has got to be stopped now.”

Gigaba said his “hard-working enemies” were trying to stop what he saw as his inevitable rise to the highest office in the land.

READ MORE: Gigaba’s attempt to appeal ‘lie’ ruling dismissed by Concourt

He said he was backed by “militant comrades who would defend him” and had threatened to hit back against those seeking to bring him down.

“I am not going to be subjected to this type of victimisation without any consequences,” he said.

Gigaba said on Sunday he would not resign after Mkhwebane’s recommendations and following the leaking of a private sex video.

“I’m not going to resign,” he told eNCA, but added “I will obviously be guided” by the President Cyril Ramaphosa and the ruling African National Congress.

The public protector on Tuesday said the minister had lied in court while testifying last year in a case filed by a company controlled by the wealthy Oppenheimer family.

READ MORE: Gigaba dares detractors to charge him with perjury

The court case hinged on whether Gigaba had approved a private terminal at Johannesburg airport for the Oppenheimers.

In an unrelated case, Gigaba last Sunday said on Twitter he had been the target of extortion attempts by an opposition politician after a sex video emerged following what he described as theft by hacking.

The defiant Gigaba said he was not just simply trying to hang on to his job.

“It’s about fighting to protect my integrity and to protect my image and to ensure that I do not become a victim of devious political campaigns. I will not be trampled upon.”

He said he would soon meet President Ramaphosa “to put my side of the story” straight.

Speaking to public broadcaster SABC, Gigaba added that the leaking of the video had been politically motivated.

READ MORE: Gigaba’s hands tied after Concourt rules against him

“We (Gigaba and his wife) have absolutely nothing to be ashamed of,” he said.

“I don’t have a problem… It was intended to embarrass me, to decapacitate me politically, to humiliate me and my family publicly, to embarrass the African National Congress.”

Mkhwebane has recommended that Ramaphosa take disciplinary action against the minister for “telling an untruth under oath and before a court of law”.

Gigaba served as finance minister for a year under Jacob Zuma, who was ousted as president in February over corruption. When Ramaphosa succeeded Zuma, he moved him to the home affairs ministry in February 2018.

(Compiled by Daniel Friedman)

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