Ramaphosa silent on scandal

NON-DISCLOSURE: Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa, right, is opting to keep mum on his private life. PICTURE: ELMOND JIYANE

DEPUTY President Cyril Ramaphosa has closed the door on any more discussions or disclosures by himself of his private life and alleged extramarital affairs following advice from ANC members and structures.

He was asked in the national Council of Provinces yesterday if his personal life was not impacting on his leadership of the SA National Aids Trust. NCOP chairperson Thandi Modise advised Ramaphosa that he need not answer the question, which the EFF called a conspiracy against him.

But he said he would. “I’m happy to respond to the question.”

He acknowledged that while answering questions in the National Assembly a week ago he had stated he took responsibility and accountability and would talk more in a day or two.

He has since been counselled by quite a number of members and structures, which told him that when he had addressed the matter in the West Rand recently he had said he was taking responsibility for this matter and also accountability. He had also discussed it with his wife.

“We do not think you should take it further,” he was advised, Ramaphosa said. He was also advised that this was a private matter. “In relation to Sanat I do not see this affecting the work that I do,” he said.

Last week in the National Assembly, he said, there was noise with some members telling him “not here we do not want to discuss the matter here”. Asked whether he would fire the SAA board chairperson, Dudu Myeni, he said that the Cabinet appointed candidates to these positions.

“I would say we should leave this matter to the Cabinet to deal with.”

On SAA’s debt of about R6.8bn which matures on September 30, Ramaphosa said it would be resolved in a twopronged approach.

Any funds appropriated would be appropriated through a Special Appropriations Bill, while SAA was also negotiating with its lenders for an extension beyond September 30.

Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba and the SAA board would make an announcement at the appropriate time, he said. Of money owed to SAA by Angola, Ramaphosa that the “new government in Angola has indicated it will settle this debt”.

Regarding of a cloud hanging over Sanat’s new CEO Dr Sandile Buthelezi, Ramaphosa said he was hearing about these allegations of corruption for the first time.

“These clearly are sharp and pointed issues. What you are outlining is not known to me. I’m not a trustee of the trust. What you’ve disclosed was never brought to my attention. In fact this is the first time that I’m hearing of this. I will certainly have to look at it. I will examine all the details. I will discuss it with the trustees of the Sanat trust and will take it forward.”