Johannesburg: A probe into a controversial lavish Indian wedding in South Africa has implicated a top Indian High Commission official for "name-dropping" and "manipulation", and absolved President Jacob Zuma in the row over landing of a chartered plane at a military air base.
"The government`s investigative team has implicated an official at the Indian High Commission in the Gupta family landing saga," South Africa`s Justice Minister Jeff Radebe was on Sunday quoted as saying by state broadcaster `SABC`.
Chief of State Protocol Bruce Koloane, who was on compulsory leave, had given a statement explaining all the parties who were involved in the landing of the plane at Waterkloof Air Force base in Pretoria on April 29, he said.
"...we are saying without any fear of contradiction, no minister was involved in this matter. The President was not involved in this matter," he said.
"In any event, the President is not involved in authorising the landing or not landing of an aircraft at (an) Air Force (base). It resolves squarely under the department of defence, especially the Air Force command there," Radebe said, quoted by SAPA news agency.
One of the findings was that the landing of a chartered commercial aircraft was a direct result of manipulation of processes and that names had been "dropped" in the course of events.
"Whose name was dropped? It was not a name, it was names. The Minister of Defence (Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula) sitting here, her name was dropped. The Minister of Transport (Ben Martins) his name was dropped. The President`s name was dropped," Radebe said.