By Lehlohonolo Lehana.
President Cyril Ramaphosa says recent media reports of a complaint of corruption against him that has been reportedly been made at the Sandton police station are false.
This after it was alleged that the Free State Department of Education gave his former company a "dubious tender" for the construction of a school.
According to the paper Reserve Bank shareholder Fanie Fondse opened criminal charges against him at the Sandton Police station on Tuesday.
Fondse, 62, flanked by four people who claimed to be witnesses, carried two briefcases of documents said to be incriminating the president in corruption related to Shanduka, a company that Ramaphosa was a shareholder in.
In 2015, while the ANC’s deputy president, Ramaphosa allegedly "persuaded" the Free State Department of Education to give Shanduka a contract to build schools in the Free State.
The tender was not advertised and no bidding process was administered. Two schools were build by Shanduka in one year.
ANC Secretary-General Ace Magashule was premier of the Free State at the time. Magashule’s office referred questions to the office of the Free State MEC for education.
"While the newspaper report is not clear on the details of the complaint, the report contains glaring inaccuracies and a clear misrepresentation of facts," said Ramaphosa on Saturday.
He said Shanduka Group never received a tender for the construction of any schools in the Free State.
The company has never operated in the construction industry, he said.
The President further placed on record that:
- He was neither a director nor a shareholder in Shanduka Group in 2015, at the time he was alleged to have “persuaded” the provincial department to award the non-existent contract. He exited the business in November 2014.
- The Shanduka Foundation, a non-profit organisation established by Ramaphosa in 2002, has made substantial contributions to the development of township and rural schools. (The Shanduka Foundation is now the Cyril Ramaphosa Foundation.)
- In 2013 the Shanduka Foundation committed R100 million to a school development project in the Free State alongside Kagiso Trust (which also made a R100 million commitment) and the Free State Department of Education (which made a commitment to match these contributions).
- This project, originally known as the Kagiso Shanduka Trust and now simply as KST, has to date facilitated the contribution of around R280 million from foundations and private sector donors to schools in the Free State.
- Neither Ramaphosa nor any companies in which he held interests has ever received any benefit from school construction in the Free State or anywhere else in the country. On the contrary, both Ramaphosa and Shanduka have made substantial financial contributions towards the construction and development of schools.
Statement on allegations contained in The Star newspaper https://t.co/vjaa5P33Bm— Presidency | South Africa ?? (@PresidencyZA) April 17, 2021
The group also opened a case of racketeering, money laundering and treason against Ramaphosa, accusing him of colluding with apartheid leaders in looting money from the South African government.