JOHANNESBURG — South African President Cyril Ramaphosa has said he may have violated anti-corruption laws in connection with the alleged theft of large sums of money from his Farah Farah game farm, a parliamentary panel has said. He was asked to resign on Thursday after an investigation found out.
The call follows allegations by the country’s former head of intelligence, Arthur Fraser, that Ramaphosa attempted to cover up the theft of a large sum of cash stuffed into his farm sofa in 2020. Zuma, a political rival and ally of Jacob’s predecessor, has accused Ramaphosa of money laundering and violation of foreign exchange control laws.
In the report, a congressional committee raised questions about the source of the funding and why it was not disclosed to financial authorities, citing potential conflicts between the president’s business and the public interest.
Ramaphosa has denied wrongdoing and claims the money came from selling animals on his farm. But opposition parties and detractors of the ruling African National Congress party are calling for Ramaphosa’s resignation.
The party’s supreme decision-making body, the ANC’s National Executive Committee, will meet on Thursday evening to be briefed on the matter and potentially decide Ramaphosa’s fate. seeks re-election as party leader. This will allow him to run again in his 2024 South African presidential election.
Lawmakers are expected to debate the report on Tuesday and vote on whether further steps should be taken, including whether to proceed with impeachment proceedings. ANC lawmakers have a majority in parliament and may oppose impeachment of the party leader.
“The president appreciates the gravity of this issue and what it means for the stability of the country and the government,” Ramaphosa spokesman Vincent Magwenya told reporters. It said it was still processing the report. Constitutional democracy as a result of the report, therefore, whatever decision the president makes must be informed by the best interests of the country. We cannot rush that decision,” Magwenya said.
Ramaphosa claimed $580,000 in stolen money, according to a congressional report, disputing the initial $4 million that Fraser claimed was stolen.
The report also questioned Ramaphosa’s explanation that the money came from the sale of the buffalo to Sudanese businessman Mustafa Mohammed Ibrahim Hajim, and asked why the animals remained on the farm after more than two years. rice field.
An investigation by the central bank suggested there was no record of the dollar entering the country, the report said. “We are unable to investigate or verify the source of foreign currency,” it said.
A congressional committee said Ramaphosa had been put in a conflict of interest situation and said the evidence presented “establishes that the president may be guilty of serious violations of certain sections of the Constitution.” .
The report criticized Ramaphosa for failing to follow proper procedures to notify the police, instead choosing to refer the matter to his presidential protection unit chief.
The largest opposition party, the Democratic League, is among those calling for Ramaphosa’s impeachment.
“President Ramaphosa has most likely violated a number of constitutional provisions and is open to rebuttal. Impeachment proceedings for his actions must proceed, and he will receive a far more adequate and comprehensive report than has been given so far. explanation would have to be offered,” said John Steenhisen, leader of the Democratic Alliance.
Political analyst Dale McKinley said he wasn’t convinced there was enough information to force Mr. Ramaphosa to resign.
“I don’t think Cyril Ramaphosa will step aside unless he’s indicted. If he’s indicted, he’s going to have to swallow it and basically do it,” McKinley said. “If he’s not indicted, just this impeachment proceeding, my sense is…he’s going to try to strengthen his base and get through it.I could be wrong though.” , the first instinct of politicians is survival.”