Home Affairs Minister Malusi Gigaba has confirmed that Gupta brothers, Ajay and Atul are not South African citizens.
He was briefing the media on technical processes that his department followed to accept the applications of some Gupta family members for naturalisation in South Africa.
Gigaba came under fire last year, when it emerged he personally intervened to help the Guptas to acquire their naturalisation certificates in 2015.
Gigaba says the Guptas applied for naturalization based on the people they employed and their philanthropic work in the country.
Ajay is currently a fugitive from justice after he failed to hand himself to South African police last month. Gigaba says he’s a permanent residence permit holder as he refused to renounce his Indian citizenship.
Gigaba says, “There has been an argument that there was a decision to favour this family by expediting their application, their appeal, but maliciously granting them SA citizenship. We need to clarify that their application was done in 2013, it was rejected in 2014, they appealed and based on the documents submitted the decision was overturned.”
“They were asked to renounce the citizenship of the country of origin, and Ajay declined. Therefore he is not an SA citizen. He is a permanent residence permit holder which he received in 2008,” adds Gigaba.