Hanekom denies Edward Zuma’s claim that he’s friends with Judge Pillay

Image credit: Flickr/GovernmentZA

Former Minister Derek Hanekom has denied claims by Edward Zuma, son of former President Jacob Zuma, that he’s friends with Judge Dhaya Pillay.

Pillay is the judge who issued a warrant of arrest, stayed until 6 May, against the ex-President earlier this week.

She also ruled against Zuma in the defamation matter brought by Hanekom over his claim last year that Hanekom was a “known enemy agent.”

‘They’ve known each other for years’

In an interview with Xoli Mngambi on eNCA on Thursday morning, Edward Zuma claimed Pillay has been close with Hanekom and Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan for years.

He said, “How close they are, I could never be able to judge on that one, but the fact that they are able to go out in public and post that they are having lunch and dinner with the Gordhan and blah blah blah…”

When Mngambi pushed him for proof, he added, “Proof is an understatement – we have evidence to that effect. These are family friends who’ve known each other for years.”

The ex-President’s son maintained that Gordhan and Hanekom are among people in the African National Congress (ANC) who are “hellbent” on destroying Zuma’s legacy.

Hanekom denies claim

However, Hanekom denied being friends with Judge Pillay. In a response to News24, he said, “I saw her in the High Court in Durban for the first time in my life when she presided over the defamation case.”

Gordhan is yet to respond to Edward Zuma’s claim. He and Hanekom have long been strident critics of the former President and state capture.

Zuma’s decision to fire Gordhan as Finance Minister in March 2017 sparked controversy in the ANC and across the country.

Hanekom also reportedly tabled a motion of no confidence against Zuma during an ANC National Executive Committee (NEC) meeting in 2017.

Last year, he admitted having meetings with Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) in 2017 to discuss Zuma’s removal from office through Parliament.

The admission triggered Zuma’s tweet labelling him an “enemy agent” as well as an ANC NEC decision to ask the party’s top 6 officials to resolve the matter.

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