S. African rand falls as police summon finance minister

Reports of Pravin Gordhan's potential arrest lead to market turmoil

S. African rand falls as police summon finance minister

World Bulletin / News Desk

South Africa’s currency, the rand, has slid to a one-month low Wednesday after the elite police unit the Hawks summoned Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan on Thursday. 

Gordhan is being accused by the Hawks of illegally establishing a unit investigating organized crime and tax evasion at the South African Revenue Services (SARS) which he headed from 1999-2009. 

“I believe this attack on Gordhan is politically motivated because he is in dire opposition to President Jacob Zuma,” Andre Duvenhage, politics professor at Northwest University told Anadolu Agency. 

He said if Gordhan is arrested it will have a huge impact on the country’s economy, which is still recovering after Zuma fired two finance ministers last December, which led to market turmoil. 

The rand, which was trading at 13.21 to the U.S. dollar on Tuesday, hit a record low of 14.09 to the greenback by midday on Wednesday. 

President Zuma’s office has denied claims there is a rift between him and Gordhan. 

Experts say reports of Gordhan’s looming arrest will affect investor confidence in the country leading to capital outfall. 

“The fact that the Minister has reportedly been requested to appear before the Hawks suggests he may be informed about possible charges and may face arrest,” opposition Democratic Alliance (DA) Shadow Finance Minister David Mayneir said in a Wednesday statement. 

 Pravin Gordhan has been finance minister since December 2015.


Güncelleme Tarihi: 24 Ağustos 2016, 16:03