President Cyril Rampahosa “deliberately misled” parliament about a R500,000 donation he received during his campaign to become leader of the ANC, the Public Protector Busiswe Mkhwebane has found. Ramaphosa quickly made a response, and said he would consider what his next steps would be.
The complaint from November 2018 was made by the DA’s Mmusi Maimane about a payment of R500,000 in October 2017 to his campaign. Originally Ramaphosa had responded to parliament that the money was paid to his son and was part of a business transaction.
“President Ramaphosa’s statement on November 6 2018 on his reply to Mr Maimane’s question (in parliament) … was misleading as he also conceded in his correspondence to my office, and even in his subsequent letter to the speaker of the National Assembly on November 14 2018, where he sought to correct the incorrect information he had provided in the National Assembly.”
Mkhwebane found that Ramaphosa misled parliament about the donation, and in doing so violated the executive code of ethics.
Ramaphosa’s office issued a statement in response to Mkhwebane.
“It is unfortunate … that from a cursory reading of the final report, it seems that the President’s response to the Section 7(9) notice has not been given due consideration.
“Nonetheless, the President will study the Public Protector’s report and make a decision on any further action.”
In a statement the DA said, “Given the Public Protector’s announcement today that she has found that Ramaphosa took dodgy money from Bosasa and lied to Parly, we are calling for the establishment of an Ad Hoc Committee to consider this report and to ensure Ramaphosa is held to account.”
Mkhwebane said that Ramaphosa had fully cooperated with the investigation and that his behaviour had been “examplary.” She said she believed he behaved this way because he believed that he was not above scrutiny.