Sam Mpofu

Ajay Gupta is not ready to return to South Africa but he wants to clear his name

Ajay Gupta, the oldest of the three Gupta brothers, is not happy with testimonies against his family before a Commission of Inquiry into alleged state capture involving the Gupta brothers who were very powerful and were believed to have amassed wealth through corrupt means and their ties with Jacob Zuma when he was president.

The issues that unfolded during testimonies before the Commission of Inquiry led to the resignation of Nhlanhla Nene as finance minister who admitted visiting the Guptas privately.

Despite the way Ajay Gupta feels about the accusations in South Africa, he does not intend to return to the country where he is wanted for corruption in a matter different from the ongoing Estina investigation.

The Guptas had left South Africa for Dubai early this year when President Zuma was forced out of power and had offered to testify before the Inquiry via video conferencing, but the Inquiry’s leaders declined.

“I’m not saying that I’m not coming to the commission,” The New York Times quoted Ajay Gupta to have said. “I will, but not this moment.”

“I want to clear my name,” he added.

So far, prosecutors have failed to prove that the money siphoned from the Vrede dairy farm project (Estina) benefited the Guptas or companies connected with them in any way, although another criminal case in ongoing.

Ajay Guptal told The New York Times that his family was just caught in a crossfire between rival politicians in the ruling African National Congress (ANC).

“Was Ajay Gupta or Gupta family proven guilty? One place? One smallest thing?” he asked.

South Africa had in September signed an extradition treaty with the United Arab Emirates to send home those who are faced with corruption charges that have sought refuge in their country. Although the treaty was believed to have been targeted at the Gupta brothers, no action has been taken to suggest the country is trying to force the Guptas back.