Home South African Ramaphosa says he is refunding buffalo buyer; denies resignation plan

Ramaphosa says he is refunding buffalo buyer; denies resignation plan

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President Cyril Ramaphosa has indicated that he is in the process of repaying money owed to Sudanese businessman Hazim Mustafa, who allegedly paid more than $580,000 (R10.57 million) for the purchase of buffaloes from him in December 2019.

President Cyril Ramaphosa. File picture: Independent Newspapers

PRESIDENT Cyril Ramaphosa has indicated that he is in the process of repaying the money owed to Sudanese businessman Hazim Mustafa, who allegedly paid more than $580,000 (R10.57 million) for the purchase of buffaloes from him in December 2019.

“On the issue of Phala Phala, we have dealt with this issues and various agencies have come with their own conclusions. I have said it from the beginning that I am not even going to interfere or make any move as they will, in the end, determine exactly what the situation is,” he said.

When it comes to repaying the Sudanese businessman, Ramaphosa said an arrangement was being made to refund him for the uncollected buffaloes.

“He (Mustafa) has a clear claim and that claim has to be met. We will repay the money because this is a legitimate claim,” he said.

Ramaphosa, who was speaking to 702 during an interview on Monday, also denied reports suggesting that he was ready to resign ahead of the ANC national elective conference in December 2022.

“I do not know anything about wanting to resign. Did I really want to resign? I will be voted into power and I will serve my term, with ‘serve’ being the operative word. Serving the people of South Africa with the best that I can give in the remaining years of my life is important to me. I am 72 (years old) this year and I will be prepared, willing and able to serve the people,” he added.

At the weekend, ‘Sunday Independent’ reported that the African Transformation Movement (ATM) has requested the Independent Police Investigative Directorate (Ipid) to unseal the investigation report into how police officials allegedly covered up the theft of dollars from under Ramaphosa’s farmhouse couches during the Phala Phala farm scandal in Limpopo.

The ATM revealed that it had been denied access to the report in spite of various attempts to get it after the party wrote to Ipid requesting an investigation into 11 matters relating to the alleged police cover-up of the theft at the Phala Phala farm.

‘Sunday Independent’ further reported that Ipid spokesperson Phaladi Shuping had said the investigation into the matter had been completed and a recommendation report was referred to the SAPS to institute disciplinary steps in line with their regulations.

Last year, Ramaphosa was cleared by the Public Protector and the South African Revenue Service, who found no evidence against him.

In her report, then acting Public Protector Kholeka Gcaleka exonerated Ramaphosa while suggesting that the blame lay with his adviser, Bejani Chauke; the head of presidential protection services, General Wally Rhoode; and police officer Sergeant Hlulani Rikhotso.

Last year, a Sars investigation into the scandal found no evidence that Ramaphosa had violated any exchange control regulations.

The tax collector finalised its investigation and report into the Phala Phala matter on August 14, 2023, following allegations made by Arthur Fraser, the former head of the State Security Agency around June 2022, and subsequent complaints from various parties, including the EFF, UDM and the ATM.

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