'A severe oversight': Ramaphosa's son paid R2m by Bosasa - report
“The truth always outs! Our Parliament has been deliberately misled.”
That was the reaction by DA MP John Steenhuisen to the news on Wednesday that President Cyril Ramaphosa's son Andile had acknowledged being paid R2m by Bosasa - a company tainted by damning allegations of corruption at the Zondo commission of inquiry into state capture.
News24 reported on Wednesday that Ramaphosa jr. admitted that his company Blue Crane Capital signed an "advisory mandate" with Bosasa and was paid a monthly retainer of R150,000, which was later increased to R230,000.
"It was a severe oversight on our part," Ramaphosa jr. told News24. "It is clear now with the benefit of hindsight that our due diligence was insufficient in retrospect of my father's role going into the presidency."
Ramaphosa previously declined to tell MPs how much his son had made from business dealings with controversial government service provider African Global Operations, at the time named Bosasa.
TimesLIVE reported on March 7 how, during a question and answer session in the national assembly, DA leader Mmusi Maimane had wielded a copy of a contract between Bosasa and Andile that he had obtained through a Paia application.
But the contract was sent to Maimane with the amounts paid out to the president's son redacted.
"The people of this country deserve to know the truth, they deserve to know what's being covered up here … how much did your son benefit from Bosasa, which has had a generally corrupt relationship with your party?" asked Maimane.
Ramaphosa refused to disclose the figure, saying all information related to the issue had been presented to public protector Busisiwe Mkwhebane, who was probing the matter.
Steenhuisen accused Ramaphosa of having misled Parliament about the contract.
Maimane had earlier claimed that Ramaphosa had lied to parliament about a R500,000 payment received from Bosasa CEO Gavin Watson and asked the public protector to conduct an investigation.
Ramaphosa initially told Parliament that the payment was for consultancy work done by his son. But later he said that was not the case and confirmed that it had been a donation, without his knowledge, towards his presidential campaign.
Former Bosasa auditor Peet Venter told the state capture inquiry on Tuesday that in October 2017 he was instructed by Bosasa boss Gavin Watson to facilitate a R3m payment for a home loan for a company employee.
But from that cash, Venter was told to deposit R500,000 into an Absa bank account. This money, he was told, was destined for Ramaphosa's son Andile.
"I wasn't aware of what the relationship was and why [Watson] would make a payment to the son of the deputy president of South Africa," Venter said.