JOHANNESBURG – South African elite police unit, the Hawks, said on Tuesday it would exercise its “constitutional powers” after Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan failed to meet a second deadline to answer its questions, weakening the rand further.
“The minister, for whatever reasons, has failed to meet the SECOND deadline for answering questions and our legal team are forging a way forward which will see the Hawks exercising our constitutional powers,” the Hawks said in a statement.
“The investigations will not be stalled by an individual who refuses to comply with the authorities and demand a preferential treatment.”
The rand extended losses against the dollar after the Hawks statement, falling more than 2 percent to 15.8570.
South Africa’s finance minister accuses police unit of threatening him
South African Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan on Tuesday hit out at a police unit investigating his role over setting up a surveillance unit at the revenue agency, saying its latest statement regarding the matter was threatening.
The elite Hawks police unit said earlier it would exercise its “constitutional powers” after Gordhan missed a second deadline to answer questions about a suspected spy unit established while he was head of the South African Revenue Service.
Gordhan said it was “factually incorrect” that he had failed to respond to a letter from the police.