South Africa News

Thabo Mbeki rejects Julius Malema’s old Apartheid intelligence machinery claims of working with Fraser

Former president Thabo Mbeki has responded to Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) leader Julius Malema’s claims that he wants to unseat current ANC president Cyril Ramaphosa and is using Arthur Fraser to do so.

On Wednesday, a forum of political parties held a media briefing, where Malema announced that the opposition in Parliament would bring a motion of no confidence against Ramaphosa over Phala Phala farm robbery.

The controversial February 2020 robbery, which took place at the president’s Phala Phala farm in Limpopo, came into the public’s attention after former State Security Agency (SSA) director-general Arthur Fraser laid criminal charges against Ramaphosa and Presidential Protection Unit head, Wally Rhoode for allegedly concealing the crime.

RET forces

During Wednesday’s briefing, Malema suggested that Fraser was colluding with Mbeki rather than the ANC’s radical economic transformation (RET) faction, which is aligned to former president Jacob Zuma.

“RET forces of the ANC have never in jubilation celebrated Fraser, including on the [Phala Phala] allegations. They have never owned up to this allegations. RET faction declared Fraser as a hero and used Phala Phala as a way of de-campaigning the president.

“That is why it was difficult to raise it in the policy conference of the ANC, because it was not their initiative and therefore, they are asking themselves whose agenda is Fraser driving,” he said.

“The answer is Fraser is with [former] president Mbeki in the unseating of president Ramaphosa, because Mbeki says he is still disgruntled for not finishing his term [as president].

“Mbeki is longing for a [Zacharias Richard] Mahabane situation again. There’s an allegation that Fraser is actually working with Mbeki and not the RET forces,” the EFF leader added.

The Thabo Mbeki Foundation promptly dismissed the EFF leader’s claims.

“President Mbeki rejects Mr Julius Malema’s scuttlebutt with the contempt it deserves. He is certain that it originates from the old Apartheid intelligence machinery. It is intended to deepen divisions within the ANC and to frustrate efforts towards the organization’s renewal,” the foundation said in a tweet on Thursday.

‘No national plan’

Last month, Mbeki seemingly criticized Ramaphosa at the memorial service of ANC deputy secretary-general Jessie Duarte, saying he failed to make good on his promise on a social compact to address the living conditions of South Africans who are faced with the reality of soaring joblessness and social inequality.

The former president then went further to say that “nothing has happened” since Ramaphosa’s State of the Nation Address (Sona) in February.

“There is no national plan to address the challenges of poverty, unemployment, inequality. It doesn’t exist,” he said at the time.

Mbeki also indicated that he feared an Arab Spring-like uprising in South Africa, with the country having already experienced the July 2021 riots, which left over 350 people dead and caused massive economic damage.

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