Mantashe on Phala Phala farm saga: 'The president has not stolen resources'

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Gwede Mantashe.
Gwede Mantashe.
Jeffrey Abrahams/Getty Images
  • Mineral Resources Minister Gwede Mantashe has cautioned those calling for President Cyril Ramaphosa to step aside or resign because of the Phala Phala farm saga. 
  • Mantashe said Ramaphosa was a victim of a burglary and had not stolen state resources. 
  • The ANC national chairperson said those seeking justice against Ramaphosa should wait for the outcomes of investigations. 

ANC national chairperson Gwede Mantashe has cautioned those calling for President Cyril Ramaphosa to resign following the Phala Phala saga, saying that action should only be taken when wrongdoing emerges from law enforcement probes. 

Mantashe said South Africans were obsessed with being quick to call on those accused of wrongdoing to be fired while investigations had yet to be finalised. 

The mineral resources minister previously shielded Ramaphosa from calls within the ANC for him to step aside while an investigation into the February 2020 burglary at his Phala Phala farm takes place, News24 previously reported. 

Mantashe continued with his line of defence on the sidelines of the ANC Gauteng provincial conference. He projected Ramaphosa as a victim of a robbery and not a man who had stolen state resources for his benefit. 

He said:

If we talk about Phala Phala, we are not talking about a president that has stolen resources. We are talking about an issue of a president whose money was stolen. That is what we are talking about. Therefore, if that money was in the wrong place at the wrong time, therefore SARS must deal with that issue and the Reserve Bank must deal with exchange controls.

Mantashe added: "We will follow the outcome of the process and take action. In South Africa, what is expected is that there is Phala Phala; therefore, fire everybody. It does not work that way. Let us allow South African Revenue Service to do its work, and let us allow the Reserve Bank [to do the same]."  

READ | Phala Phala theft: No record of 'official' request from Namibian police - justice ministry

The Hawks have been tasked with investigating the criminal complaint laid by former state security boss Arthur Fraser. 

Fraser laid a criminal charge against the president regarding the February 2020 burglary. Ramaphosa was said to have used his private protection service to investigate the robbery instead of opening a criminal case with the SAPS. 

The president has since faced numerous questions and accusations about his handling of the matter. 

The DA has asked the FBI to probe Ramaphosa for possible money laundering because of the $4 million kept at his farm. 

The EFF has called on Ramaphosa to resign. 

The Office of the Public Protector confirmed it was investigating the president following a complaint by the African Transformation Movement. 

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