Phala Phala: No outcome yet from integrity commission, despite a 'very good' meeting - Ramaphosa

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  • Cyril Ramaphosa is still awaiting a report from the ANC's integrity commission regarding the Phala Phala allegations. 
  • He confirmed he had met the commission and had a "very good" engagement. 
  • Ramaphosa spoke to the media at a Sadtu council meeting in Kempton Park.

The ANC's integrity commission is yet to finalise and communicate its report on criminal charges against President Cyril Ramaphosa in relation to the alleged theft of millions of dollars from his Phala Phala farm.

This was according to Ramaphosa, who addressed the media at a South African Democratic Teachers' Union (Sadtu) council meeting.

Speaking to the media after delivering the ANC's message of support at the meeting in Kempton Park, Ramaphosa confirmed he had met with the integrity commission.

He was, however, still awaiting a report from the party's disciplinary body. 

"I had a very good exchange with members of the integrity commission," said Ramaphosa, who added that he had "given them quite a bit of information".

READ | Phala Phala: Mystery Sudanese businessman paid $580 000 to Ramaphosa's farmhand 45 days before theft

He explained that most of what he told the commission was "already in the public domain".

Since the emergence of the allegations on 1 June 2022, after former spy boss Arthur Fraser filed a criminal complaint against him, Ramaphosa has refused to publicly shed more light on the incident.

He said he would not make further comments until the investigations had been concluded. 

On Tuesday, Ramaphosa claimed that, despite reports suggesting the integrity commission had reached out to ask him to take special leave or resign, no such communication had occurred. 

"As a commission, they are meant to write up whatever report, which I have yet to see; maybe you [as the media] have seen it, but I haven't, and it will only be after I have seen it that I can comment," said Ramaphosa. 

READ | President Cyril Ramaphosa appeared before the ANC integrity commission - Kodwa

Fraser accused Ramaphosa of, among other things, kidnapping, money laundering, bribery, and "concealing a crime" in relation to the alleged theft at his farm. 

In his 12-page sworn statement, accompanied by photographs, documents and closed-circuit television footage of the alleged theft, Fraser also fingered Ramaphosa's head of security, Major-General Wally Rhoode, and national police commissioner General Fannie Masemola, among other top cops. 

The allegations could seriously dent Ramaphosa's chances leading up to the ANC's elective conference in December. 

So far, he has received overwhelming support from all but one province, KwaZulu-Natal.

Sadtu 

Wary of the reception he might receive at the Sadtu meeting, Ramaphosa walked into the venue after a long delay, accompanied by a heavy security presence. 

The was after an ANC-led delegation was prevented from delivering the governing party's message of support at Cosatu's 14th elective national congress last week. 

Sadtu is an affiliate member of Cosatu - but, despite the hostile reception at the congress, Ramaphosa received a warm welcome at Sadtu's national general council. 

Addressing the union, Ramaphosa praised the work that teachers undertook during the height of the Covid-19 pandemic, saying that while they were at the frontline during the pandemic, teachers continued to work with students to ensure they salvaged what was left of the academic year. 

He also indicated that, beyond the Covid-19 pandemic, "teachers are increasingly working under testing circumstances, given the rapid rise in incidents of violence, abuse and bullying".

READ | ANC does not want to 'interfere' with investigations into 'Rama-Phala Phala'

"Teachers are being attacked at schools, and another scourge is the increasing incidents of racism that show there are people who want to reverse the gains that we have achieved," said Ramaphosa. 

He called on teachers, parents and policing forums to work hand-in-hand to reduce the incidents of violence. 

Ramaphosa urged the private sector to partner with the government to invest in upgrading school infrastructure. 

"We need the private sector to assist us [as government] with modernising, upgrading, and the expansion of our school infrastructure to benefit all learners, particularly in under-served areas. 

"The current situation in many schools, in many areas of our country, is most worrying. After the neglect of our schools by the previous apartheid regime, I am being told that, to upgrade schools, for instance, in a province like Limpopo, would take up to 75 years.

"That is why we are trying to work on financial instruments that could help us to change schools now," said Ramaphosa. 


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