Attacks on Ramaphosa meant to‘undermine his candidature’
IN HIS article, (“Marikana massacre could be Ramaphosa’s downfall”, Sunday Independent, August 21) Sparks Motseki rightly points to how the Marikana tragedy is being used by many to score political points.
Motseki says the tragedy, which is probably one of the worst in South Africa’s history, “has become a political football”.
However, he then goes on to do the same thing he cautions against, by laying the blame for the tragedy on Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa with the clear intention of sowing doubt about Ramaphosa’s candidature for ANC president.
Motseki ignores the findings of a judicial commission of inquiry which, after examining the evidence of several witnesses, e-mails from Ramaphosa, phone records and two days of testimony from him, established that there was no basis – even on a prima facie basis – for the claim that Ramaphosa was responsible for any of the Marikana deaths on August 16, 2012.
Like others who view Ramaphosa as a threat to their political and perhaps financial ambitions, Motseki sifts and strategically uses pieces of information out of context and presents this as evidence to support his claims against Ramaphosa.
This is the same evidence, viewed holistically and in context, that was used by the Farlam Commission to clear Ramaphosa of any wrongdoing in relation to the events of August 16, 2012.
Motseki, like many others before him, refers to a phrase contained in an e-mail to Lonmin management and ascribes a meaning to it that does not make sense in the context.
If one views all the correspondence from Ramaphosa, it is clear that “dastardly criminal” acts refer to the murders that had already taken place, not the act of going on strike.
Similarly, “concomitant action” refers to action that is appropriate and necessary to prevent further murders.
If anyone is in any doubt about what “concomitant action” means, they should refer to the e-mail reporting on Ramaphosa’s conversation with the then minister of police Nathi Mthethwa on August 12, 2012, which was the last time he spoke to the minister before that fateful day when 34 people lost their lives. It says: “As I indicated, I spoke to the minister of police again and stressed that they should immediately take steps to ensure that they protect life and property and bring those responsible for the terrible acts of violence and death to book… Let us all keep cool heads.”
If the Farlam Commission considered all the evidence before it and declared that the accusations made against Ramaphosa were “groundless”, one has to start questioning Motseki’s motivation for making such accusations now.
Perhaps he is a concerned citizen. But his record casts a big shadow of doubt on that possibility, particularly when one takes into account his close business ties with the controversial Gupta family, whom we can reasonably assume would be adversely affected should Ramaphosa be elected ANC president and subsequently president of the country.
Ramaphosa’s stance against corruption and “state capture” has clearly raised the ire of Motseki and his keepers, who have sprung into action with fake intelligence reports and unfounded accusations aimed at discrediting Ramaphosa and undermining his candidature as the next president of the ANC.
Members of the ANC who will be attending the National Conference, as well as those who will be casting their vote in the national elections in 2019 can see through the orchestrated attacks on Ramaphosa, and come election day, they will cast their vote against corruption to chart a new course for the renewal and restoration of the ANC and the revival of South Africa.