S.Africa’s top court clears Ramaphosa of misleading parliament about donations

PUBLISHED: Thu, 01 Jul 2021 09:42:19 GMT

CAPE TOWN, July 1 (Reuters) – South Africa’s top court on Thursday re-affirmed an earlier ruling that President Cyril Ramaphosa did not deliberately mislead lawmakers about donations to his 2017 campaign to lead the ruling party.

The Public Protector, an anti-graft watchdog, had been unhappy with last year’s ruling by the high court, which found that Ramaphosa did not, as alleged, intentionally mislead parliament about fundraising and donations. These included 500,000 rand deposited into Ramaphosa’s son Andile’s account.

Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane had also alleged in her 2019 report that there was prima facie evidence of money laundering involving millions of rands in the campaign to succeed Jacob Zuma. Ramaphosa denied this when he took her report for a legal review, winning the case in the high court last year.

The constitutional court on Thursday threw out a challenge by Mkhwebaned that ruling.

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“The Public Protector was wrong on the facts … with regard to the issue whether the president had wilfully misled parliament and the high court was right to set aside her findings,” judge Chris Jafta said. (Reporting by Wendell Roelf Editing by Tim Cocks)

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