In a blog post, Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) deputy president Floyd Shivambu uses recent reports featuring leaked emails from President Cyril Ramaphosa’s CR17 campaign as evidence to bolster a claim often made by his party – that South Africa has simply jumped from one form of state capture to another.
In fact, he went a step further, making a distinction between “Gupta capture” – which he said had been “misnamed state capture for political and discursive convenience” and actual state capture, which was what he claimed “the white capitalists” were now using Ramaphosa to achieve.
The ANC elective conference at Nasrec which resulted in Ramaphosa’s election as the governing party’s leader presented the party with two choices which were both “fatally wrong”, Shivambu writes – “one associated with the Gupta capitalist [faction] and one intricately embedded in white monopoly capital”.
The ANC’s decisions, he argued, were not driven by principle but by two factions of conflicting capitalists trying to dominate each other.
“This form of ANC capture is the worse form of capture because a significant component of his highest decision body is a product of money. This simply means the ANC will be incapable [of] rescuing itself because it is not just individuals who are captured, but the entire organisation.”
According to Shivambu, the “capitalist establishment” was spurred into action after they “realised that their ruling class status was being threatened by the less sophisticated, greedy and flamboyant Gupta capitalist” faction.
“Faced with this reality, the white capitalists united in [supporting] Ramaphosa to win over the ANC, with the end goal being capture of the state”.
Shivambu called Ramaphosa “a rented president” and alleged that those who rented him used the media to create “unanimity” about his leadership being the best option for South Africa.
“Ramaphosa’s intricate alliance with the white capitalist establishment is not a secret,” he writes elsewhere, linking the president to billionaire businessman Johann Rupert and others.
Ironically, Shivambu himself has also been accused of having a “close relationship” with Rupert, who is quoted discussing the dealings they have had with each other in Pieter du Toit’s book The Stellenbosch Mafia.
He was also accused in a Daily Maverick report of having approached the “Stellenbosch Mafia” for the funding of projects, including a wine bar.
Shivambu has denied ever having had a close relationship with Rupert, and any wrongdoing relating to the Daily Maverick allegations.
Shivambu and his party have also been accused of involvement in corruption, including the “looting” of since-liquidated VBS Bank. EFF leader Julius Malema has also been implicated in the 2012 On-Point Engineering scandal, involving Limpopo government tenders. There has also been controversy surrounding EFF funding from alleged cigarette smuggler Adriano Mazzotti.
The EFF deputy president’s blog post refers to “factual and accurate reports” which he believes back up his claim.
This likely refers to recent reports in Sunday Independent and News24 which included leaked emails from President Cyril Ramaphosa’s successful CR17 campaign for the ANC presidency, which led to him becoming state president.
Leaked emails from the CR17 campaign were first mentioned by News24 in a story which included names of potential donors and appeared to show the involvement of Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan in the campaign, as well as seeming to show that Ramaphosa’s claim that he was not involved in the running of the campaign or aware of its donors was at least partially untrue.
Then, in a Sunday Independent article titled “How the CR17 campaign funds were channelled”, it was reported that the publication had seen the campaign’s bank records, as well as emails and financial statements which identified the beneficiaries of the “R1 billion” campaign fund, who according to the story were “politicians, campaign managers, and strategists” who “earned millions for their roles in Ramaphosa’s” successful CR17 campaign for the ANC presidency.
The report alleged that some of Ramaphosa’s main funders were numerous wealthy businesspeople, including mining magnate Nicky Oppenheimer, who reportedly gave R10 million; Pick n Pay founder Raymond Ackerman, who gave R1 million; and eNCA founder, director and owner of Hosken Consolidated Investments Johnny Copelyn, who donated an alleged R2 million on behalf of the news channel. Former Absa CEO Maria Ramos was another alleged donor.
The article was co-written by a trio that included Piet Rampedi and Mzilikazi wa Afrika – two of the journalists behind now-discredited Sunday Times reports on the so-called Sars “rogue unit”. They both parted ways with the Sunday Times after these reports were retracted and apologised for when the media ombudsman found them to be “