The president says he has nothing to hide following former State Security Agency director-general, Arthur Fraser’s assertions that he tried to conceal a crime at his Phala Phala farm.
Mashudu Sadike and Tshwarelo Hunter Mogakane
PRESIDENT Cyril Ramaphosa has voluntarily subjected himself before the ANC integrity commission, saying he had nothing to hide following former State Security Agency director-general, Arthur Fraser’s assertions that he tried to conceal a crime at his Phala Phala farm.
The crime involves the farm being robbed of an alleged $4 million (more than R60 million).
Ramaphosa further denied any involvement in “criminal conduct”, saying the money stolen were the proceeds from the “business transaction of selling animals” because he was a game farmer.
In a statement, his party the National Working Committee (NWC), after meeting on Monday welcomed and commended the decision by the president to voluntarily present himself to the ANC Integrity Commission, led by veteran politician, George Mashamba, in line with ANC policy.
The statement read in part: “The NWC received a briefing from the national officials regarding media reports on charges laid by Mr Arthur Fraser against President Cyril Ramaphosa. The national officials undertook to process the matter expeditiously and to report to the next NWC. The NWC will deliberate on the matter further once it has received a report from the national.”
The Pretoria News previously reported that the former spy boss had laid criminal charges against Ramaphosa at the Rosebank police station in Joburg, accusing him of concealing an incident where the $4m was stolen.
Fraser further claimed that Ramaphosa had paid people to conceal the matter after they were tortured.
Fraser wrote in a statement circulated on social media, that he had laid a charge of defeating the ends of justice and kidnapping suspects who were allegedly interrogated, and further claimed that he had handed over supporting documents including photographs, bank accounts and video footage as evidence.
Ramaphosa has since confirmed that a robbery had indeed taken place at his farm in February 2020 and that money was stolen, but has denied claims made by Fraser that he had a part in concealing the crime.
However, Democracy In Action (DIA) has called on the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) to prosecute Ramaphosa or face court action in a letter addressed to NPA Director of Public Prosecutions Shamila Batohi.
The letter read: “Mr Arthur Fraser has laid criminal charges against Mr Cyril Ramaphosa (accused number 1) and general Wally Rhoode (accused number 2), accusing them of money laundering, failure to report a crime among other complaints.”
Rhoode is (part of) Ramaphosa’s police protection unit and is accused of not reporting the burglary.
The letter further said Ramaphosa had admitted that indeed there had been a burglary that took place at his private residence where the money was stolen thereafter concealing the crime scene.
The letter continues: “With evidence and a confession from accused number one, we implore yourselves to immediately charge, investigate further and prosecute both the accused criminals.
“Failure to heed our call will leave us no option but to use other available avenues as provided for in law to make sure that both suspected criminals are prosecuted.”
According to the Financial Intelligence Centre Act, Ramaphosa could be charged for money laundering for keeping that amount of money at his farm.
The act reads in part: “Section 28 requires accountable and reporting institutions, to report cash transactions above the prescribed limit of R24,999.99 to the FIC as soon as it is aware of the cash threshold transaction but not later than two days.”