CYRIL’S POSH R30m PLOT

CityPress - - Front Page - BIÉNNE HUIS­MAN bi­enne.huis­man@city­press.co.za

Deputy Pres­i­dent Cyril Ramaphosa’s new lux­ury man­sion will be built at the foot of Lion’s Head in Cape Town on a large stretch of prime land he bought for R30 mil­lion.

Ramaphosa bought two steep moun­tain-side plots in up­per Fres­naye in 2010, ap­par­ently to build his “re­tire­ment home”, a wellplaced source told City Press.

The plots are reg­is­tered to the Tshiv­hase Trust – Ramaphosa’s fam­ily trust – at the deeds of­fice and have a com­bined size of 1 423m2.

This means the deputy pres­i­dent forked out R21 000 per square me­tre just for the land, and ex­ca­va­tion and build­ing are bound to cost many more mil­lions.

How­ever, this would prob­a­bly be con­sid­ered to be pocket change for Ramaphosa. He’s one of South Africa’s rich­est men, with a for­tune es­ti­mated at $550 mil­lion (R6.8 bil­lion) by Bloomberg last month.

The plots are some of the last un­de­vel­oped tracts of land on sea-fac­ing Head Road, which fol­lows the con­tours of the moun­tain and is con­sid­ered to be one of the coun­try’s posh­est streets.

At the build­ing site this week, con­struc­tion staff were hard at work ex­ca­vat­ing and clear­ing the site. They told City Press that the bil­lion­aire politi­cian stopped by to per­son­ally in­spect their handy­work just two weeks ago.

Ramaphosa was whisked up Fres­naye’s nar­row streets in a two-car con­voy and was ac­com­pa­nied by se­cu­rity guards when he got out for a chat with the crew at the build­ing site.

“Yes, he was very friendly and, I mean, it’s a big hon­our to work for the deputy pres­i­dent,” said one worker, speak­ing from be­hind the wheel of a mon­ster ex­ca­va­tion ma­chine.

Work­ers have toiled there for the past two and a half months, bal­anc­ing heavy ma­chin­ery on a sheer precipice to blast gran­ite from the moun­tain­side in or­der to cre­ate a flat sur­face where the deputy pres­i­dent’s new house will be built.

They are nearly fin­ished with that, and soon a new team will ar­rive to dig foun­da­tions for the house.

City Press caught a glimpse of the build­ing plans for Ramaphosa’s villa, which will have a swimming pool and a deck with sweep­ing views of the At­lantic Ocean and Robben Is­land.

“Ja, the views are amaz­ing. Just look at Robben Is­land,” said one ob­server. “On clear days, the deputy pres­i­dent will be able to pin­point Madiba’s very cell.”

Ramaphosa has a size­able prop­erty port­fo­lio, which in­cludes a game farm near Bela-Bela in Lim­popo and a man­sion in the up-mar­ket Johannesburg sub­urb of Hyde Park.

He also gets ex­clu­sive use of a se­cure, Vic­to­rian-style man­sion in Pre­to­ria as his of­fi­cial res­i­dence, but City Press un­der­stands that he prefers to stay in his home in Hyde Park when he is in Gaut­eng.

City Press also un­der­stands that the Fres­naye prop­erty is in­tended as a re­tire­ment home for Ramaphosa and his wife, Dr Tshepo Mot­sepe, who is min­ing mag­nate Pa­trice Mot­sepe’s sis­ter.

How­ever, his se­cu­rity de­tail may just wreak havoc along the nar­row moun­tain streets.

Ramaphosa’s new neigh­bours do not ap­pear to be short of cash ei­ther. At a villa next door, two Bent­leys could be seen parked side by side in a glass-en­cased garage, and a Porsche drove by while we were there.

The Ramaphosas’ neigh­bours on Head Road will in­clude US tele­vi­sion and film pro­ducer Mark Gor­don. Gor­don, for­mer pres­i­dent of the Pro­duc­ers’ Guild of Amer­ica, filmed parts of the Warner Broth­ers fan­tasy flick 10,000 BC in Cape Town in 2006.

Just down the road, for­mer Spring­bok coach Harry Viljoen sold his bis­cuit-coloured man­sion – called Moon­dance – for R110 mil­lion in 2013.

SEASCAPE The view from the con­struc­tion site where Cyril Ramaphosa’s new house is be­ing built

PHOTOS: LERATO MADUNA

PIC­TURE PER­FECT A plot of empty land in the pic­turesque sub­urb of Fres­naye costs mil­lions

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