South Africa- Communications minister Dina Pule has broken her silence.
The minster responded for the first time to damning allegations of corruption made against her in the Sunday Times.
Pule said at a press conference today that she would remain in her position and should be presumed innocent until proven guilty.
“Am I thinking of resigning? No. A resounding no.
“I have to be presumed innocent until proven otherwise.”
Pule was speaking today following her recent meeting with President Jacob Zuma.
She did not disclose the details of a meeting with President Jacob Zuma, but seemed confident that she would remain in her position.
Pule insisted she followed the letter of the law on every contract signed or appointment made.
She said she did not know anything about millions of rand worth of sponsors' money, earmarked for an ICT conference that allegedly disappeared.
“It seems like the complaint was coming from sponsors.
“I have not heard any complaint coming from sponsors,” she said.
Pule remained mum on whether she had received expensive gifts in exchange for favours.
“I would love to respond to that but we have to respect the fact that it's part of the investigations,” she said.
Pule accused the Sunday Times newspaper of relying on biased sources and said the newspaper was being fed information by people who were trying to blackmail her into giving them contracts.
“The mud throwers' hands are not always clean,” she said.
But the minister would not name-and-shame the businessmen concerned, saying she was acting on legal advice not to do so.
Pule said she had also not gone to the police nor had the businessmen blacklisted over the alleged intimidation.
The Sunday Times said they will consider Pule's comments and respond accordingly.