Home News Premier Saul rubbishes rape allegations

Premier Saul rubbishes rape allegations

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Northern Cape Premier Dr Zamani Saul dismissed allegations of raping a minor as ’lots of drivel written by faceless individuals’.

Premier Zamani Saul. File picture

NORTHERN Cape Premier Dr Zamani Saul has dismissed allegations of raping a minor as “lots of drivel written by faceless individuals” during his reply to the State of the Province debate.

He indicated that the EFF was “harvesting nonsense from the dustbins on social media platforms” and encouraged them to open charges of rape against him if they had any concrete evidence.

EFF provincial secretary Shadrack Thlaole, during the debate, queried when they would receive a response to a letter that they had sent to the premier.

According to the allegations, Saul had a sexual relationship with an underage girl, who was said to be 15 years old at the time.

It was also alleged that a child was born out of the relationship and that Saul had a “history of engaging in sexual acts with young girls”.

ALSO READ: Saul slams ’latest instalment of vile attacks’ against him

Thlaole said they had not leaked the letter to the public but had followed the correct channels in sending the letter to the premier’s office.

“We are still waiting for an answer and this cloud will hang over the premier’s head. He must tell the truth – when you touch a woman you need to attend to it,” said Thlaole.

Saul stated that he refused to “glorify such trash with a response”.

“Lies have short legs and the truth is enduring. I’m too busy, too focused on my work and won’t allow myself to be distracted.”

Saul said he had come across the letter from the EFF on social media platforms.

“I am dead certain that they placed the letter on those platforms because the letter was never meant for me to respond to it. With due respect, I firmly believe that it is not the Office of the Speaker that did that, it is the EFF.

“They did the same thing in early 2020, wrote a long letter, poorly crafted, accusing me of all kinds of corruption and calling on me to resign as the premier. This letter was undersigned by the provincial chairperson and thrown on social media platforms. This is the Northern Cape EFF’s modus operandi.”

He encouraged EFF provincial leader Aubrey Baartman to read the responses on social media platforms to the letter.

“One Facebook user asked a pertinent question, ‘Wat van die korrupsie wat jy en jou klonk gedoen het hier in Nama Khoi Munisipaliteit’. (What about the corruption that you and your crew committed at the Nama Khoi Municipality)?”

Saul reiterated that the allegations that were contained in the EFF’s letter had no substance.

“I am standing here addressing this honourable house not as an accused person. The chairperson of the EFF is sitting here in this house as an accused person for allegedly squandering close to R80 million when he was a municipal manager at Nama Khoi. Municipality. The eagerness around accusing others is, in most cases, driven by a sense of insecurity.”

Saul highlighted how “garbage was collected on social media” by demonstrating comments from Facebook users on the post of the latest letter from the EFF.

“The first user says, ‘As far as I know Zamani is still with his wife, can Shadrack first tell us why you divorced your wife’. The second user asks, ‘Is Shadrack sure that he has never raped, but please first post your Grade 12 certificate’.

“The third user says, ‘This is disgusting, how can a whole political party collect rubbish from social media, put it on its letterhead, sign and address it to the premier. No self-respecting party would do that and no serious secretary would sign such nonsense. For me, this is not a letter but a piece of nonsense’.

“The fourth user, who got supported by many others, asked, ‘If you’ve got such information of a 15-year-old that gave birth to a now 15-year-old child why are you not opening a criminal case of statutory rape, why these fools are writing letters?’”

Saul said that he believed that the allegations were “maliciously distributed” on social media.

“This will not turn this ‘nonsense’ into a truth and will also not help our engagements in this honourable house.

“The letter that was sent to me is correctly characterised by the user as a ‘piece of nonsense’. I want to state it categorically clear here and now that I am not going to respond to that ‘piece of nonsense’.

“I’m not going to stand here, waste my time and respond to a ‘piece of nonsense’ which seeks to undermine our struggle against gender-based violence and femicide.”

He advised the EFF to open a case of statutory rape.

“You should do as you did with the corruption case against the officials in Umsobomvu and Phokwane municipalities. So you know the procedures. If there are allegations of rape, go and lay charges at the nearest police station and stop playing out your insecurity in this house and clutching at straws.”

He pointed out that social media platforms are “riddled with false and misleading content”.

“The All-in-One Social Media Tool research highlights that there are more lies on social media than truths.”

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