Zondo vs Ngcobo – the strange tale of two Presidential corruption reports #Spygate

WITHIN the space of months, South Africa has seen two separate reports implicating the Presidency in alleged corrupt activities. The first report was that of the Zondo Commission into Allegations of State Capture, whose first volume was handed over on 4 January, followed by the the second, third and fourth volumes handed over on 1 February 2022, 1 March 2022 and 29 April 2022 respectively, to Director-General in The Presidency, Ms Phindile Baleni.

This was followed by volumes 5 & 6 including an ‘amended version of the Zondo Report which incorporated corrections made by Chief Justice Raymond Zondo, who chaired the Commission. The October release followed the granting of permission by the Pretoria High Court on the 4th of October 2022, to allow Chief Justice Zondo to ‘make corrections to the final volume of the report’ which was submitted to the Presidency in June 2022.

Next up on 1 December 2022, the Ngcobo Report, emanating from a Section 89 panel chaired by Justice Sandile Ngcobo appeared. This secondary report detailed the strange events at Phala Phala, a game ranch associated with current President Ramaphosa.

Where the far larger Zondo Report comprising 5500 pages focused on corruption allegations implicating former President Jacob Zuma and his compound Nkandla, alongside the siphoning of millions of Rands into various accounts associated with what appears to be an elaborate, and treasonous attempt to create a corrupt parallel ‘state within a state’, the rather thin 82 page Ngcobo Report appears to be very tame in comparison.

The single volume Ngcobo Report found that President Cyril Ramaphosa may have contravened various sections of the Constitution, ‘acting in a manner that was inconsistent with his office’ and thus acts which may be considered impeachable offences. As Ngcobo put it, the president ‘had a case to answer to’ for events surrounding a 2020 burglary at his Phala Phala farm in Limpopo. Whether the result amounts to corruption in terms of the Prevention and Combating of Corrupt Activities Act of 2004 remains to be seen. It is clear at first glance, that the President himself, was not involved in the actual burglary, but possibly involved in money laundering, at very least they are contraventions of the regulations.

The report itself however, is more an indictment of the executive than the President alone: “Given the high rank in the police hierarchy that these senior police office hold, we can assume they knew that theft which involves such huge amount had to be reported to the police official in the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation. Why they did they not do so? We do not have an explanation for failure to report the offence under Section 34(1).

Rogue Spy Boss

It is of grave concern that former Zuma spy-boss Arthur Fraser, whose name appears no less than 48 times in the document and who is a man also at the centre of the Zondo findings appears to be the sole source of much of the hearsay evidence referred to in the Ngcobo Report. As the Rand tanked, instead of resigning President Ramaphosa now appears to have taken the report on judicial review, while the US Chamber of Commerce issued dire warnings concerning the country’s future economic stability.

It should be remembered that it was the minority opposition party Cope which first laid criminal charges against Fraser citing allegations contained in the final section of the Zondo Commission’s report. He appears implicated in allegations on the mishandling and distribution of large amounts of money from the SSA. This fact alone would tend to disqualify him from presenting evidence in what seems like a smear campaign.

Fraser is also set to face criminal charges for unlawfully releasing Zuma from Prison, and by some accounts is potentially the most dangerous criminal in South Africa today, especially given the failure to implement the findings of the Khampepe Commission of Inquiry, his position within the intelligence community, and serious nature of the allegations involving his so-called ‘Principal Agent Network’ (PAN)? For example, a nerve centre that received information from PAN, was located in Fraser’s house, in the process compromising national security. The commission noted that ‘centralization of power in Fraser’ resulted in him’ ‘acting like he was the Director-General of the SSA. Secondly, there was no control by the Director-General; it became a free for all and Mr Fraser was a law unto himself’.

It is even more alarming that the six volume Zondo Report, was immediately preceded by the arson attack on the House of Assembly by one Zandile Mafe, an event which occurred alongside the burning of House records, and the extremely brief Ngcobo Report thus comes on the tail end of several such attempts at orchestrating a broad-based insurrection (such as occurred in July 2021) at the behest of those named in the Zondo Report.

Smear Campaign

Given the context of these events, the Ngcobo Report appears nothing less than a calculated, if thinly veiled attempt by the protagonists to distract the public’s attention with a similar, but less implicating controversy for the ruling party, a party which has been at pains to spin its ‘mass appeal’ and thus a ‘revolutionary narrative’. Wave another magic wand, and the masses I suspect, will think the next President is tastier than a Ranch Fried Chicken?

This whilst the perpetrators named in the Zondo Report, (also the subject of various shenanigans during and subsequent to its release) escape further scrutiny, and the grand party manages to shift public focus, to presumably recover electoral ground?

Forensic investigator Paul O’Sullivan claims “the President has been set-up”. He is certainly being framed for a fall during the next ANC leadership battle, whatever the outcome, this while the brains behind Nkandla and the associated spook antics during the course of the past months, set the stage for a come back?

Where the daily press were quick to label the events at Phala Phala, ‘#Farmgate’, no similar appellation was given the contents of the far more damning Zondo Report — a case of the press being captured? One need not go too far to suggest anything more fanciful than #Nkandlagate? So how about #Spygate? A common theme, all involving a massive failure in intelligence?

Citizens are bound to be asking questions as to whether any of the troubling cases referred to, from either of these two executive reports, will ever come up in court, but the bet here is that Ramaphosa’s case will reach a verdict a lot faster than the high treason surrounding Nkandla. One can only hope that our institutions prevail, that the country maintains its democratic path.

UPDATE: IOL are today alleging that the President received millions of Rands in donations from various foreign countries, apparently based upon Arthur Fraser’s Affidavit. The Affidavit only refers to an ‘undisclosed sum’ and does not mention these countries as the origin.

You’re living in the wrong country Mr Cheadle

SOUTH AFRICA’S corrupt legal authority Halton Cheadle is at it again. Readers may remember the erstwhile ‘labour czar’, a man who in 2010 sought to determine a labour court decision in favour of his own client and business associates, in the process shooting down the TRC Report and inter alia altering this writer’s religious affiliation to conform to an absurd decision, one inverting the very facts of apartheid.

Cheadle, who is no longer a director at the law firm bearing his own name, appears to believe article 12 of our constitution is no major impediment to vaccine mandates. Article 12 guarantees the ‘right to bodily and psychological integrity’, which includes the ‘right to security in and control over the body’; and the right ‘not to be subjected to medical or scientific experiments without informed consent’.

In an interview broadcast on eTV last night, Cheadle made out a case for vaccine mandates which boil down to a resort to his own authority, or what is commonly referred to by scholars as an ‘argumentum ad verecundiam,‘ i.e. a form of fallacy in which the opinion of an authority on a topic is used as evidence to support an argument.

In support of his assertions which boil down to changing the democratic character of our democracy in favour of a totalitarian state, Cheadle then trots out the well-worn argument that vaccines have been ‘effective in countering smallpox, polio and diphtheria’. All good and well, until one arrives at involuntary vaccination.

In the interview, he appeared anxious to meet any religious objections.

Cheadle should know that the only case precedent in favour of mandatory health interventions apply to prisoners and state patients, and Medialternatives has covered similar ‘rubbish posing as legal opinion’ in the public domain and put forward by one Pierre de Vos ( please read my response).

De Vos is known to often resort to a common fallacy namely obscurum per obscurius or ‘rendering the obscure more obscure by reference to obscurity’.

While de Vos avoids examining the evidence for universal vaccination and Cheadle appears to be reading CDC newsbriefs alongside Glenda Grey (see my follow up post), both scholars have not bothered to record, nor deem it fit to tackle legitimate public and human rights concerns.

For instance concerns articulated by demonstrators over the weekend regarding both the efficacy of current vaccines and the long term effects and safety of mRNA dosing.

For the record, I have vaccinated with the Pfizer jab, am in favour of vaccination and immunisation as a form of positive discrimination in labour law but draw the line when it comes to removing patient consent.

South Africa has an egregious and tragic history of involuntary psychiatric treatment of political dissidents, torture as treatment, forced gender re-assignment, and medical experimentation and sterilisation programmes aimed at reducing the black population.

Cheadle is an embarrassment to both UCT and all the victims and survivors of apartheid.

He certainly should not be practising law, let alone making pronouncements on eTV that seek to strip citizens of individual and personal autonomy, not to mention human agency.

Mogoeng is misinformed, disingenuous and unhelpful

IN A LENGTHY statement to the press early this month, South Africa’s Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng warned those ‘making allegations against judges and the judiciary to stop hiding behind fictional identities or names’

He claimed further that he never received any formal complaints against his colleagues.

“Only a sworn enemy of our constitutional democracy would make allegations so grave against the judiciary without the evidence to back them up.”

He said he never received any formal complaints against his colleagues.

“Make your true identity and contact details known to us and the South African public. Tell us which judge has been captured, corrupted and by whom.”

The chief justice said for the sake of a South Africa that deserves a corruption-free judiciary, those making allegations should be willing to give evidence even in a court of law.

He said he never received any formal complaints against his colleagues.

That the Chief Justice was being disingenuous and more than unhelpful can be demonstrated by the fact that Independent Media have published criticism of the judiciary as a prominent OP-ED piece under my own byline, not a nom de guerre , in which I proceed to refer to a sworn affidavit and supporting documents regarding the capture of a well-known member of the legal profession performing judicial duties.

Medialternatives can reveal that the individual, who presided over a 2010 discrimination case involving his own client and business partners is none other than Halton Cheadle, and that my affidavit details the lengths to which I have gone in informing inter alia, SAPS, NPA, JSC and the Cape Law Society.

My Op-Ed also makes note of the manner in which South Africa’s justice system has turned into a mere business system, and one should add, a system that is not evidence based per se, but rather an opinion-based system inherited from the past period of colonialism and apartheid.

Until the evidence in my affidavit  is heard before an impartial court of law, in a fair hearing in which I possess an attorney, there is  absolutely no likelihood that the Chief Justice’s advice will be adhered to, and any averments in this regard should be rejected by free-thinking citizens.

Other statements attributed to the Chief Justice claim that he has requested SAPS to investigate allegations against the judiciary, but fail to record that the NPA appears to have a policy of doing nothing about the problem, when it comes to corporate and party-political capture of judicial officers.


Naspers “half-apology” ignores decade-long battle for justice and contrition

FOR TWO decades, South Africa’s largest media group, avoided responsibility for apartheid, deflected newsroom criticism, gagged journalists and engaged in a dirty-tricks cover-up which would result in a massive courtroom fraud. The group, which includes Media24 and Multichoice now faces questions regarding its role in corruption at the Cape Bar.

South Africa’s constitution requires that we “recognise the injustices of our past”. It would be considered a national crisis bordering upon sedition if the preamble were removed, or if references to apartheid and the freedom struggle were excluded from national legislation.

But this is exactly what a judgement, issued by the Labour Court of South Africa during 2010 accomplished, thanks to the skillfull manipulation and fabrication of evidence by Kahanovitz SC, aided and abetted by a disgraced businessman,the international labour broker and erstwhile drafter of South Africa’s “labour relations act”,  one Michael Halton Cheadle.

Both stand accused of colluding to defeat the ends of justice.

During proceedings, not only was the TRC report trashed, but the court under an acting justice took such a warped and contrarian view of the facts, that it created a new form of anti-morality, in which support for apartheid is considered the gold standard, and opposition to the institution of race segregation, in particular its aftermath following 1994, grounds for questioning ones credibility.

“His evidence is unreliable because he is engaged in a campaign against the Respondent for its support of apartheid and its refusal to apologise for doing so before the Truth and Reconciliation Commission. That is clear from his pleadings, the documents he compiled, the evidence he gave and the emotion with which he displayed in conducting his case. This is what drove him and the evidence of his personal engagement with the Respondent was shaped to advance this campaign. His evidence was tendentious.”

Apartheid is neither a tendency, nor is it an accident of history — the defence used by Media24 sole witness, Annelien Dean, has its origin in the apartheid heresy issued by the NGK, used to support an unscientific, racist ideology. During proceedings, Dean managed to convince Cheadle, obviously awestruck by the shareprice of his client and business associates, that her views on race profiling and a “racialised past” were also granted succour by the Catholic Church, an institution of which she claimed to be a member.

Race segregation is not and has never been, a teaching of the Catholic Church.

Neither the modern NGK nor any other branch of mainstream Christianity believes that apartheid is natural or the work of divine inspiration, and trying to make a fuss about the respondent’s affiliation, as if her reference to Die Dominee, and her contradictory statements in this regard somehow make her a credible witness, merely increases the pain of what is blatantly obvious in the judgement.

It can only be considered lawful if you think apartheid was lawful.

Instead of justice,  my views as a secular humanist, journalist and opponent of racism, were twisted, and turned into an attack on Christianity and religion in general. According to Cheadle, I was the one at fault for not adhering to a strict and literal interpretation of the Torah —  the Old Testament.

9 years ago on 29 August 2006 the Freedom of Expression Institute was moved to defend my rights after a threat of gagging by the self-same company Media24

Back then, Na’eem Jeenah and Simon Delaney wrote: “It is extremely disconcerting ….that Media24 has chosen to resort to threats …  in order to silence a journalist and, in so doing, is undermining a value and right that it should be protecting and defending.””We are of the opinion that companies and other non-natural persons cannot be defamed under the law. As such, your accusation against Mr Lewis is clearly meant simply to intimidate him into self-censorship.”

“We encourage you to spare yourselves the embarrassment of being viewed as a media institution that wants to subvert freedom of expression”.

As to how an outcome which demonstrably contradicts the truth, overturns constitutional values such as press freedom and freedom of religion, (which is also the right to freedom from religious rule), would be possible under a secular dispensation is anyone’s guess.

Kahanovitz currently faces disbarment proceedings for his role in perpetrating a gross fraud upon the court and for his statements with regard to the TRC Report, in a complaint acknowledged on 17 July 2015 by Paul Farlam, disciplinary officer for the Cape Bar Council.

Dean as sole witness, faces ongoing accusations of perjury for her role in explaining away race profiling and race segregation at Media24s WP Koerante, community newspapers division as nothing more than a “coincidence of homogeneity”.

Yes, you read that right, apartheid was merely an accident of nature, tell us another whopper, like the one about Robbie Jansen and Jimmy Dludlu?

That she repeatedly lied about what had occurred in the newsroom during 2006 is clear, her false accusations of plagiarism made the lies about her background seem trivial. She even hoodwinked the court, telling all and sundry, that she had never been “anywhere near Bloemfontein”, which would make her matric certificate issued by Brebner High School, a fraud.

What more can one say about a judgement that insists that I worked at Die Burger?

I do not write in Afrikaans.

Cheadle’s fall from grace, caused in part by the exposé of his corrupting role in a labour and financial services empire has already been covered here.

The 18 June 2015 announcement by the Vice Chancellor of the University of Cape Town that the law professor was moving into post-dated early retirement, since 31st December 2014, thus came as no surprise. Perhaps a shock and wakeup call to his supporters, those who chose to overlook the compromised role played by the Resolve Group and its corrupting influence upon the judiciary, detailed in submissions to the Judicial Services Commission, Cape Law Society and Directorate of National Prosecutions.

With friends in high places, it was easy for him to simply pull strings, and so one week later on 24 June 2015, NPA were issuing statements declining to prosecute, but the point about Cheadle’s corruption had been made, and the decision by the Western Cape still stands for review. (I am in the process of preparing an Affidavit consolidating several annexures in the investigation into corruption).

On 23 July 2015, a case (EC19/2015) detailing the failure of the Minister of Justice to uphold the terms and outcome of the TRC was filed by myself against the Minister, with Naspers as second respondent.

Two days later Naspers were suddenly issuing an apology. Doing something “it should have done 19 years ago – apologise for the role it played during apartheid.” as commentator Sibusiso Tshabalala  put it.

“While the apology, delivered by Media24 CEO Esmaré Weideman, took many by surprise, it did little to shed light on how Naspers – now Africa’s largest media company with a market value of over $61bn (R779bn) – was complicit in the actions of South Africa’s apartheid government during the time.””After all, Naspers, when given the chance to come clean during South Africa’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) in 1996, refused to give a public account of just how deep its collaboration ran with the apartheid government.”

“Is silence from that quarter to be construed as consent, conceding that it was a sycophantic handmaiden of the apartheid government?” Tutu asked.

Similarly, in regard to my own plight and the case before the Equality Court, is silence from the media to be construed as support for apartheid newsroom censorship?

Is silence from the media to be construed as support for race profiling and apartheid denial?

Where does this story end, are we going to see closure, or are we going into another round of window-dressing?