‘There’s absolutely no such:’ Presidency insists Ramaphosa did not lie

Image credit: Facebook/The Presidency of the Republic of South Africa

The Presidency has insisted that President Cyril Ramaphosa did not lie to the nation when he said he wasn’t involved in CR17 day-to-day fundraising activities.

Speaking to Aldrin Sampear on Power FM‘s Power Talk on Monday, the president’s spokesperson Khusela Diko maintained that Ramaphosa was largely “kept in the dark.”

President Ramaphosa was not informed of the day-to-day fundraising campaign – who donated how much.

Yes, there were instances where he would have been consulted. He was the candidate at the end of the day. He would have been consulted perhaps to identify some people, but he was not involved

Khusela Diko

Leaked emails

Diko was reacting to leaked emails published on News24 on Friday which purport to show that Ramaphosa may have allegedly known of at least some of the donors.

In one of the emails, CR17 campaign manager Donné Nicol allegedly asked Ramaphosa to thank “Eric Samson” for his donation and to ask for “another R10 million.”

Asked whether Ramaphosa lied to the nation about being kept in the dark, Diko insisted that he didn’t.

I am telling you that there is absolutely no such. President Ramaphosa was kept in the dark in so far as a lot of those campaign donations – who donated and how much.

Khusela Diko

She refused to confirm the authenticity of the leaked emails and maintained that no wrongdoing can be ascribed to the president.

Mkhwebane’s report

The controversy stems from Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane’s report into whether or not Ramaphosa deliberately misled Parliament over a R500,000 donation from former Bosasa CEO Gavin Watson to CR17 campaign.

Diko said the president stands by his assertion that he wasn’t aware of Gavin’s donation at the time he gave a reply to Parliament about the matter.

However, Mkhwebane found that Ramaphosa had “deliberately misled” Parliament.

In her report, she also cited “evidence in her possession” in the form of emails which suggested that Ramaphosa was consulted about fundraising.

Ramaphosa has filed an urgent interdict against the report’s remedial actions with a view to filing a court review to set the report aside.

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