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Gigaba denies Ajay Gupta is on the run with SA passport

Gigaba denies Ajay Gupta is on the run with SA passport

As Home Affairs Minister Malusi Gigaba was criticised regarding his comments on the Gupta family's citizenship and naturalisation‚ on Wednesday the department was forced to admit that Atul Gupta is, indeed, a South African citizen. His brothers‚ Atul and Rajesh‚ are also on the run from South African authorities.

Gigaba has come under fire from the opposition for failing to pitch for a National Assembly question and answer session.

The EFF even accused Gigaba of lying to Parliament.

The judgment followed a court battle launched by Fireblade Aviation, owned by the Oppenheimer family, in November 2016 against the Department of Home Affairs and others. "We're dealing with a liar, a pathological liar".

International Relations and Cooperation Minister Lindiwe Sisulu said that she is surprised to hear that the Gupta brothers do not have South African citizenship.

Speaker Baleka Mbete read a letter from Gigaba claiming he is ill and excusing himself from proceedings.

The DA's John Steenhuisen asked that the veracity of the letter be investigated; adding that he believed there was another reason for the minister's absence. These included that the family employed thousands of workers in South Africa and was engaged in several philanthropic activities in the republic.

Both Ajay and his brother, Atul, were not citizens but had permanent residency permits.

According to the Independent Electoral Commission's vice-chairperson‚ Terry Tselane‚ Atul is registered on the South African voters' roll and his voting station is in Saxonworld Primary School‚ three minutes away from the family compound. "We have had discussions with the Director General at Home Affairs and we confirmed that our records are aligned with that of Home Affairs", said Tselane.

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