Sowetan

Cyril on the warpath

Deputy president blasts Guptas at SACP congress

- By Ngwako Modjadji ■

Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa let loose at the South African Communist Party (SACP) national congress in Boksburg yesterday, attacking President Jacob Zuma, the Gupta family and those involved in state capture.

In his address, he went as far as vowing he would no longer keep quiet about corrupt activities and state capture.

“There is no single day that passes that we don’t gain greater insight into a network of illicit relationsh­ips, contracts, deals and appointmen­ts that are designed to benefit just one family and their associates,” Ramaphosa said.

“I was pained when I read a statement from a religious organisati­on that was calling for action against what they see happening in the body politics of our country.

“They said in their statement the Gupta e-mails paint a grim picture. They continued that the justice department is also paralysed; the NPA and the Hawks; the SAPS are in disarray with several investigat­ions under way to determine leadership fitness.”

Ramaphosa said billions of rands of taxpayers’ money has been siphoned off into Guptaowned businesses without any benefit to the South African economy. He said that besides Gupta control of many state enterprise­s, there was a growing list of foreign organisati­ons influencin­g social policy in the country. “When things like these are spewing out in our national discourse we can’t turn a blind eye to these revelation­s,” he said.

“We also know that we as taxpayers also paid for a lavish wedding that took place in Sun City,” Ramaphosa said, referring to the wedding of the Gupta brothers’ niece in 2013.

“These are resources with which we were meant to build schools, houses and clinics,” he said.

Ramaphosa also called again for a judicial commission of inquiry into state capture and that it must be appointed without further delay. “We need to act now to prevent any further damage,” he said.

“We are also saying our law enforcemen­t agencies must act with speed and they must also act with purpose to investigat­e all these allegation­s and to bring those who are responsibl­e to book. But more importantl­y, we also need to go out and recover the monies that have been stolen. Those monies must be brought back. They belong to the people of SA.”

This is the strongest speech made by Ramaphosa, who is clearly emboldened by the fact that his camp emerged victorious at the ANC’s policy conference last week.

Ramaphosa also hit out at the British PR firm Bell Pottinger, which was employed by the Guptas, accusing it of manipulati­ng SA’s political concepts to fuel divisions and confusion.

See page 15

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 ?? / MASI LOSI ?? Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa laughs at a joke before delivering a message from the ANC during the 14th congress of the SACP held at Birchwood Hotel.
/ MASI LOSI Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa laughs at a joke before delivering a message from the ANC during the 14th congress of the SACP held at Birchwood Hotel.
 ??  ?? Deputy general secretary of the SACP Solly Mapaila
Deputy general secretary of the SACP Solly Mapaila
 ??  ?? SACP general secretary Blade Nzimande
SACP general secretary Blade Nzimande

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