Former S. African President Zuma’s son refutes allegations against him

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JOHANNESBURG, SOUTH AFRICA JANUARY 24: (SOUTH AFRICA OUT) Former president Jacob Zuma supports his son Duduzane at the Johannesburg Commercial Crimes Court, where he is facing charges of fraud and corruption on January 24, 2019 in Johannesburg, South Africa. Corruption charges against Duduzane Zuma were withdrwan to allow a key witness to finish giving testimony at the Zondo inquiry into state capture. (Photo by Gallo Images / Netwerk24 / Felix Dlangamandla)
FILE: Duduzane Zuma, the son of former president Jacob Zuma during his appearance at the Randburg Magistrates Court, (Photo by Gallo Images / Sowetan / Alon Skuy)

Former South African President Jacob Zuma’s son on Monday concluded his first appearance at the Zondo Commission where he refuted allegations against him.

Duduzane Zuma, 35, told the state capture inquiry that the Gupta brothers were not part of a meeting in which former Deputy Finance Minister Mcebisi Jonas was allegedly offered a bribe of 600 million rands (about 39.7 million U.S. dollars) to become the finance minister.

“From my side, I have stated that there was a meeting,” said Duduzane. “Were they (Gupta brothers) part of the meeting? I said that none of them were part of the meeting.”

In August last year, Jonas revealed to the commission that he met with Duduzane at the Hyatt Hotel in Rosebank on Oct. 23, 2015, and their meeting was later moved to the Gupta home in Saxonworld, a suburb of Johannesburg, where the bribe and a cabinet post were offered.

While a statement issued on behalf of the Gupta family said the meeting never took place at all, Duduzane said it did occur, but disputed the bribery allegations.

“For statement, the statement was issued on behalf of the Gupta family, I was not part of that (bribery),” said Duduzane, adding that the meeting was to resolve some rumors.

The Gupta family is a wealthy Indian-born family with business interests in South Africa. They have long been implicated in a series of political corruption scandals and illegal dealings.

The state capture inquiry is investigating allegations of corruption and fraud in the public sector. Duduzane is expected to wrap up his evidence at the commission on Tuesday.

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