President Cyril Ramaphosa has ducked questions on the future of finance minister Nhlanhla Nene‚ saying he was “hard of hearing.”
Ramaphosa avoided the questions during a ceremony to unveil a presidential commemorative stamp in his honour as part of the SA Post Office’s World Post Day celebrations at his Cape Town office of Tuynhuys.
However, journalists were more interested in the president’s views on the fate of Nene amid growing calls for him to be axed following his public apology over his meetings with the Guptas.
“I am a bit hard of hearing these days‚” said Ramaphosa as members of the media asked if Nene still enjoyed his confidence.
“I actually have to go to an ear (specialist). Thank you very much.”
The alleged breach of the executives ethics act relates to allegations that a Public Investment Corporation (PIC) investment in S&S Oil Refinery‚ which reportedly included a $1.7m “referral fee”‚ which may have benefited Nene’s son‚ Siyabonga Nene. This was allegedly took place at a time when Nene was chairperson of the PIC board in his capacity as deputy finance minister.