Minister Gordhan’s firm stand despite drastic moves by government bodies to see him removed from office has left President Jacob Zuma and his allies frustrated.

Four of the ANC’s top six leaders have in fact sympathized and supported minister Gordhan’s firm stand on the case. Left are Zuma and deputy secretary-general, Jessie Duarte who are both more concerned on how the party would maintain leadership positions in the country come 2019 general elections.

“That is why Pravin said he is willing to let the matter go to court, because he can see that the matter is not damaging to him. The nature of the charge is usually what forces people to step down or be fired, even [ANC treasurer-general] Zweli Mkhize said after the charges were lodged that Public Finance Management Act deviations were a common problem for accounting officers.

However, a prominent ANC branch leader in Gauteng has a different view of the whole matter. He said “the removal of Pravin and the takeover of Treasury by someone who will push the populist state of the ANC would leave capital weakened”.

“But the ANC cannot survive without being a bit populist. It is either going to borrow more or raise taxes. But it will need more money to fix certain things and, if the status remains the same, they are gone in 2019,” he added.