Home affairs minister Malusi Gigaba is refusing to bow to pressure to resign amid calls for President Cyril Ramaphosa to fire him.
“If i resign, I will be giving in to a devious plot. It means that, from now and henceforth, everybody who is a victim of a political campaign of slander and destruction must simply surrender to those who have the resources and capacity to wage such campaigns. No, they must bring the war, I am ready for it. I am going to fight it to the bitter end; they must not think they can walk all over me,” Gigaba said.
The minister has said that the problems he is facing is caused by those trying to stop him rising to become the leader of the ANC, which would then lead to him becoming state president.
“That I think there is a political campaign against me is without a doubt. My phone calls and emails are being intercepted almost every day. I have to keep changing my password because of repeated attempts to intercept my communication. I reported a number of these issues to Independent Police Investigative Directorate, the police, state security and to the Inspector-General of Intelligence,” Gigaba said.
“There is a state of attempt to intercept my communication for reasons unknown to me. There are inquiries after inquiries that involve me. There is a third one beginning on Tuesday. None of these inquires has yielded fruit. I can bet my last cent that, after Tuesday, there is surely another one which is being cooked for me. It is an attempt to keep me preoccupied with things that have nothing to do with my work. At the same time, my integrity and credibility are being attacked. My family is being attacked, my life is being threatened.”
Gigaba said his “hard-working enemies” were trying to stop what he saw as his inevitable rise to the highest office in the land.
He said he was backed by “militant comrades who would defend him” and had threatened to hit back against those seeking to bring him down.
“I am not going to be subjected to this type of victimisation without any consequences,” he said.
Gigaba said on Sunday he would not resign after Mkhwebane’s recommendations and following the leaking of a private sex video.
“I’m not going to resign,” he told eNCA, but added “I will obviously be guided” by the President Cyril Ramaphosa and the ruling African National Congress.
The public protector on Tuesday said the minister had lied in court while testifying last year in a case filed by a company controlled by the wealthy Oppenheimer family.
The court case hinged on whether Gigaba had approved a private terminal at Johannesburg airport for the Oppenheimers.
In an unrelated case, Gigaba last Sunday said on Twitter he had been the target of extortion attempts by an opposition politician after a sex video emerged following what he described as theft by hacking.
The defiant Gigaba said he was not just simply trying to hang on to his job.
“It’s about fighting to protect my integrity and to protect my image and to ensure that I do not become a victim of devious political campaigns. I will not be trampled upon.”
He said he would soon meet President Ramaphosa “to put my side of the story” straight.
Speaking to public broadcaster SABC, Gigaba added that the leaking of the video had been politically motivated.
“We (Gigaba and his wife) have absolutely nothing to be ashamed of,” he said.
“I don’t have a problem… It was intended to embarrass me, to decapacitate me politically, to humiliate me and my family publicly, to embarrass the African National Congress.”
Mkhwebane has recommended that Ramaphosa take disciplinary action against the minister for “telling an untruth under oath and before a court of law”.
Gigaba served as finance minister for a year under Jacob Zuma, who was ousted as president in February over corruption. When Ramaphosa succeeded Zuma, he moved him to the home affairs ministry in February 2018.