President Cyril Ramaphosa has refuted charges by former spy boss and prisons head Arthur Fraser that he concealed a $4 million (R62 million) robbery at his Limpopo game farm.
Fraser on Wednesday opened a case of corruption, money laundering and kidnapping against Ramaphosa which could, if he is arrested, prevent him from contesting the ANC presidency in December in terms of the ruling party’s step aside rule.
Fraser claims Ramaphosa concealed the robbery from the South African Police Service (SAPS) and paid bribes in order to have suspects, who were beaten and interrogated on the Phala Phala farm, in February 2020, keep quiet.
In a statement posted on Twitter, the presidency on Thursday confirmed that it had been made aware of the charges through a media statement.
Confirming that a robbery did take place at the farm on 9 february 2020 in which the “proceeds from the sale of game” were stolen, the presidency said Ramaphosa “is clear that there is no basis for the claim of criminal conduct that have been made against him in Mr Fraser’s statement.”
The presidency said the robbery took place while Ramaphosa was attending an African Union summit in Addis Ababa and that he had reported it to the head of the SAPS presidential protection services for investigation.
“President Ramaphosa stands ready to cooperate with any law enforcement investigation of these matters,” the presidency added.
“President Ramaphosa remains resolute in leading the fight against corruption, restoring the integrity and capability of public institutions and overcoming the legacy of state capture, and will not be deterred by disinformation campaigns.”