President Cyril Ramaphosa was allegedly not aware that foreign currency amounting to millions was kept in the cushions of a sofa at his Phala Phala farm.
This is according to acting Public Protector Kholeka Gcaleka.
In an interview with Newzrooom Afrika’s Xoli Mngambi on Tuesday, the public protector was questioned whether she or her team, at any point, put a question to Ramaphosa as to why the money was kept in a sofa?
Gcaleka indicated that they had asked the president, but that he was “unaware that this money was kept in the cushions of a couch at the farm”.
“He was not informed where the money was being kept, but he was aware there was money at the farm of a sale that had taken place. But there was no discussion prior and immediately after the sale had taken place,” she said.
However, Mngambi persisted and asked if that did not raise suspicion?
“This is foreign currency that is kept at the property, and on top of it, it is kept on a sofa. Does that not raise suspicion that perhaps there is something much more that is untoward here and, therefore, we actually ought to be investigating money trails?” he asked.
But, the public protector said her office needed to follow its mandate.
“Untoward in respect of what, Xoli? We need to stick to our mandate. Our mandate is to deal with issues that are under the Public Protector’s Act and the Executive Members Act and the Code,” she said.
Ramaphosa was cleared of any wrongdoing in the Phala Phala farm saga after a year-long investigation by the office of the Public Protector.
Last week, Gcaleka released her report where she found that Ramaphosa had not breached the Executive Code of Ethics in the Phala Phala saga.
She said there was also no conflict between the president and his private interest on the farm.
The complaint was lodged by opposition parties in June last year after it emerged that $582 000 was stolen from Ramaphosa’s farm in Limpopo.
Gcaleka released her report into Phala Phala on June 30.