JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - South Africa’s revenue service denied reports on Friday that its head, Tom Moyane, had met members of the controversial Gupta family, whose relationship with President Jacob Zuma is at the centre of a string of influence-peddling scandals.
“Commissioner Moyane categorically states that he has never met any member of the Gupta family in either his private or professional capacity,” it said in a statement.
Local media outlets said this week Moyane had made numerous trips to Dubai since 2015 that coincided with trips by other government officials and executives of state firms to meet secretly with the Gupta.
Many of the scandals around the Guptas, who have denied any wrong-doing, concern access to lucrative state contracts.
The revenue service said Moyane had been in Dubai, where the Guptas have a home, in December 2015 en route to spend Christmas in Portugal.
This week, Atul Gupta, one of the three Gupta brothers, questioned the authenticity of thousands of leaked documents and emails purportedly from inside the family’s mining-to-media commercial empire.
Zuma has also denied any impropriety.
Reporting by Mfuneko Toyana; Editing by Ed Cropley