The world is changing fast and to keep up you need local knowledge with global context.
Ace Magashule, ANC secretary general, is the highest profile politician arrested in connection with state capture and corruption in the years when Zuma was president. He appeared in court as more evidence spilled out at the Zondo Commission into State Capture about the role of Jacob Zuma and family in plundering entities like Denel. Although Magashule was at pains to ask his supporters not to attend the court appearance, they arrived in force – including in specially designed t-shirts. President Cyril Ramphosa has been cracking down on corruption, with at least 100 arrests in about a month. Much more challenging than having arrest warrants issued will be successfully processing cases through the court, with Zuma demonstrating how easy it is to drag out legal action. – Jackie Cameron
South Africa President’s main rival, Ace Magashule, charged with corruption
By S’thembile Cele and Gemma Gatticchi
(Bloomberg) — South African prosecutors charged the second-highest ranking official in the nation’s ruling party with corruption, fraud and money-laundering.
The charges were put to African National Congress Secretary-General Ace Magashule at an appearance in the Magistrate’s Court in the central city of Bloemfontein on Friday. The court granted Magashule bail of 200,000 rand ($12,802) and ordered him to appear again on Feb. 19.
Magashule, who oversees the day-to-day running of the ANC, is the highest-profile serving politician to face charges since President Cyril Ramaphosa took office in 2018 and pledged to crack down on the corruption that became endemic during his predecessor Jacob Zuma’s rule. The government estimated that more than 500 billion rand was stolen.
“The investigations are done and we are ready for trial,” the National Prosecuting Authority said in a statement. Magashule’s former personal assistant, Moroadi Cholota, will be a state witness, state prosecutor Johan de Nysschen said.
— SSG (@Mjita_ofundile) November 13, 2020
The case against Magashule relates to a 255 million-rand asbestos audit contract that was awarded in the Free State, according to the police’s special investigating unit. Magashule, who was the province’s premier at the time, is being charged with seven other people, and at least three more are expected to be added to the charge sheet, the NPA said.
Magashule allegedly received various payments from murdered businessman Ignatius Mpambani, the owner of one of two companies awarded the asbestos contract, the NPA said. He also allegedly failed to report corrupt transactions, it said.
— 🙄🙄🙄 Maggs Naidu (@maggsnaidu) November 13, 2020
Ace Magashule: Leadership position
Magashule’s lawyer, Laurence Hodes, didn’t answer calls seeking comment.
The ANC’s top leadership issued a directive in August that all members who face legal charges should step aside from their duties, though none has done so yet. Addressing hundreds of supporters outside the court, Magashule suggested he’ll defy any order by the party’s National Executive Committee to step aside.
“Nobody can remove us,” Magashule said.
The ANC is currently working on a legal framework that will set out the conditions under which members should step aside. It’s expected to discuss Magashule’s position at its next meeting, a date for which hasn’t been announced yet.
“Ace Magashule is going nowhere,” Tony Yengeni, a member of the NEC, told the crowd of supporters. “He will finish his term.”
— eNCA (@eNCA) November 13, 2020
On my way to Mangaung to support comrade @Magashule_Ace tomorrow. He is my leader, friend and comrade. Loyalty is the foundation of life. I am not a fair weather friend. I stand by my friends in good & bad times. One soldier does not leave another behind on the battle field! ✊🏾 pic.twitter.com/4FH1jIYQwz
— Carl Niehaus (@niehaus_carl) November 12, 2020
The fact that Magashule will remain in his position (until found guilty)is characteristic of the anc …..its an immoral organisation without principles! …..endeavouring to lead this country…..the sooner we send them packing the better 😠😨
— Chris (@kriswentzel9) November 12, 2020
Ace Magashule going through the Zuma route to Presidency,we have seen this before and we will delivery him to the Union Buildings the same way we delivered Zuma,we will defeat them again,ngeke sizwe ngabo pic.twitter.com/TlPviZBSu3
— Nathi Sithole (@Nathi_MfokaJobe) November 10, 2020
- Cyril’s corruption crackdown has over 100 rogues arrested – and counting
- How investigators FINALLY got enough evidence to arrest Ace Magashule – the inside story
Cyril Ramaphosa: The Audio Biography
Listen to the story of Cyril Ramaphosa's rise to presidential power, narrated by our very own Alec Hogg.