Ramaphosa: I did not fail to take action over VBS saga

15 October 2018 - 15:33 By Nico Gous
President Cyril Ramaphosa.
President Cyril Ramaphosa.
Image: Kopano Tlape

President Cyril Ramaphosa has denied that he failed to take action in the VBS Mutual Bank saga.

The denial‚ contained in a statement on Monday‚ comes after City Press reported on Sunday that sources “close to a major VBS shareholder” told the newspaper that the shareholder had informed Ramaphosa about what was going on. 

“I know that the shareholder met with Ramaphosa‚ who was not president at the time. The shareholder briefed him about the outrageous corruption at VBS‚” the source was quoted as having told the newspaper.

The shareholder reportedly started blowing the whistle in 2016.

Presidency spokesperson Khusela Diko said on Monday that the allegation was “baseless and unsubstantiated”.

“President Ramaphosa has no knowledge of any meeting where he is said to have met any person associated with VBS Mutual Bank where he was purportedly briefed on the matter.”

Diko added that Ramaphosa was not warned about the implosion of the bank.

“The VBS Bank saga was brought to the attention of the president through official government channels‚ including the National Treasury.”

A forensic report released on Wednesday‚ titled “The Great Bank Heist”‚ detailed how the bank heist allegedly occurred. The bulk of the funds stolen were allegedly for the benefit of individuals and entities related to VBS executives‚ including its largest purported shareholder‚ Vele Investments.

Advocate Terry Motau and Werksmans Attorneys compiled the report‚ which was commissioned by the South African Reserve Bank (Sarb).

The report details how the R1.8bn looting spree led to the collapse of the bank and the loss of almost R2bn deposited by some of Limpopo’s poorest municipalities.