Government has rejected what it termed as malicious allegations made by Independent Media Group’s head, Iqbal Surve, about President Cyril Ramaphosa and Public Enterprises Minister, Pravin Gordhan.
In a video, Surve alleged that President Ramaphosa and the Minister had applied political pressure and were using the banks to silence the media.
“The Independent Group’s allegations are devoid of truth and seek to bring the President and the Minister into disrepute.
“Furthermore, the country has a formal banking system, which is highly regulated and accountable to regulators and industry bodies,” said Government Communication and Information System (GCIS) Director-General, Phumla Williams.
Minister in The Presidency, Mondli Gungubele, said: “This is not the first time that the Independent Group has cast aspersions on Cabinet Ministers. The media has been free of State control since the advent of democracy.
“Government enjoys a cordial relationship with media in the country through structures such as SANEF and the Press Club. The media is an important partner and stakeholder of government, and we confirm our commitment to upholding media freedom in South Africa,” Gungubele added.