The First National Bank (FNB) has announced that it is currently investigating a stamp on one of ANC newly sworn-in MP Brian Molefe’s membership forms.
FNB spokesperson Lee-Anne van Zyl said on Tuesday that the bank launched an investigation into the forms after ANC leaders in Madibeng refused to clarify discrepancies between Molefe’s two membership forms.
The internal investigation comes amid speculation that the bank suspended one of its workers over a “back office” stamp on Molefe’s membership forms.
Last week, ANC Madibeng leaders reportedly submitted two forms, said to be his membership and renewal forms as proof that the former Eskom chief belonged to one of the region’s branches.
One of the forms was stamped 2011 and the other 2015 but both forms were marked renewal and one has a “back office” stamp from the bank.
Hours before their announcement, Tshwane secretary Paul Mojapelo said Molefe was a member of ward 65 (Irene), in good standing.
But the claims were later contradicted by ward 29 branch’s former secretary, Christina Milanzi, who denied having any knowledge of Molefe; adding that Molefe’s name was not on their books.
When pressed to either confirm or deny the suspension of the employee, FNB declined to comment further.
The organisation, however, said “First National Bank has not finalised its internal investigation into this matter. Due to the confidential nature of this case, we cannot divulge any further information.”
Brian Molefe was towered to Parliament by the ruling party last week – a move opposition groups widely tagged a back-door appointment.
Molefe, who was at one time praised for bringing Eskom back from the brink of crisis resigned as CEO of Eskom at the end of 2016 following the release of the public protector’s “State of Capture” report, in which he was implicated as having a close relationship with the Gupta family.
The report found that he communicated regularly with one of the Gupta brothers and had visited the controversial family’s compound in Saxonworld 19 times, while they were negotiating to buy a coal mine.
There are speculations that Molefe could also replace Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan or at least become his deputy once President Zuma makes a reshuffle. Although Zuma has refuted the claims, reliable sources in the party insist that the move is inevitable.
If Molefe moves into deputy Finance Minister Mcebisi Jonas’s position, he can satisfy three of President Zuma’s desires. One, he can frustrate Gordhan who has gradually turned to Zuma’s nemesis.
Two, Molefe will become Zuma’s eyes and ears at the nation’s bank-vault – the National Treasury. And, thirdly, Molefe will become chairperson of the PIC, a position traditionally held by the deputy finance minister.
No doubt, Molefe’s cloud is gradually gathering water and will eventually empty itself soon.
But in as much as most people can’t tell if Molefe will finally head to the Treasury, as widely speculated, there’s only one factor that can determine whether or not and when all these could take place. That factor is Time.