#Spygate Arthur Fraser busted attempting to frame the President on money laundering charges

FACTS as they say, can be troublesome. When lies form the basis for allegations, one simple fact can make a world of difference. Take the latest interview with businessman Hazim Mustafa. In a SkyNews exclusive, he relates how he declared $600 000 USD when he arrived in South Africa, and then proceeded to pay $480 000 for some bulls ‘for which he has a receipt’.

That’s right, the money was declared at customs and the purchase occurred whilst the President was away. Phala Phala itself appears to be owned by a trust. Instead of banking the money, it seems staff decided to make use of the opportunity to stage a theft.

The result isn’t all that difficult to understand. Phala Phala staff proceed to hide the money in a place where it can easily be found by criminals who then broke into the ranch on camera, going directly to the funds. The money disappears, the President returns and reports the crime to a Police General, Major-General Wally Rhoode, who has been co-opted to the National Executive. The rest of the story is less sanguine and is incredibly problematic.

Head of Presidential Security of course, is none other than Rhoode, who is currently under suspension pending an investigation, and this following his own clumsy investigation and sloppy handling of the affair. There does seem to be an attempt to hush-up the result, perhaps to avoid security being implicated in the theft, or merely to protect national security? There may yet be outstanding issues to do with influence-peddling and tax evasion?

Enter Arthur Fraser, a rogue intelligence agent (see here and here), who it appears is still receiving intelligence briefings despite being implicated in large-scale larceny, abuse of intelligence resources, which include allegations of missing money running into millions from the Intelligence budget and the compromising of national security.

Fraser relates that merely because of ‘his position as former Director-General of Intelligence’ under Jacob Zuma, his ‘advice is regularly sought in relation to security and intelligence matters’ and that ‘unsolicited information is regularly brought to his attention by various people and entities‘ . Though he does not provide any further details, Fraser proceeds to impugn the Intelligence and Security Cluster surrounding the President.

It is no coincidence that Fraser is named in Volume 6 of the Zondo Report, into allegations of state capture, implicating him in major intelligence breaches. He thus concocts a rather bizarre plot in order to save his own skin, and also that of his former boss Jacob Zuma.

At first he alleges the President failed to report the theft and is laundering an undisclosed amount of money, the ‘quantum of which is speculated to be in the region of $4 million to $8 million’. None of which involves tax evasion and influence-peddling. The sheer bulk alone is problematic due to the weight of foreign exchange which is alleged to have been ‘hidden in furniture’, and which Fraser avers now constitutes a ‘prima facie case of money laundering’.

All the allegations are spun from the events at Phala Phala. Then he adds additional narrative via a supplement that appears to be cut-and-pasted right out of the Zondo Report. Instead of Gupta’s and the events surrounding Waterkloof Airforce Base, (where Fraser failed to report any of the resulting offences named by Justice Zondo), he now seeks to deflect the nation’s attention towards ‘Waterkloof Dollars’ arriving from distant lands such as Sudan in the form of bribes.

Problem with this narrative, aside from the fact that Fraser is no longer Director-General of Intelligence where he failed to protect the Republic from state capture — if the money has been declared at customs, it can’t be said to have been laundered. If the transaction is legitimate, and customs corroborate Mustafa’s version of events. It is basically chalk and cheese, and so lights out for Fraser. You’re busted.

At very least he has egg on his face — If Fraser was indeed in receipt of intelligence briefings on the matter (unsolicited or not), he would surely know the President has an alibi? But what if he was (or not), and then still wished to use the information for political gain? His Affidavit cannot simply be introduced on the basis of hearsay and speculation. And it cannot be put to an open court as if he were still DG operating under the Secrecy Act? It may be a miscalculation on his part, but more likely, he has calculated that the damage caused by his allegations would be sufficient for him to reach his own objectives, which appear to be anything but lawful.

Fraser at last count, was alleging via the daily press that he had “refused a R50 million offer from a Cape Town underworld boss to make the Phala Phala case against President Cyril Ramaphosa “go away”.’

Are we to believe there are now 20 assassins hiding under the Sofa?

Fraser’s Affidavit’s are therefore an exercise in hyperbole, purposeful exaggeration. Expect these allegations to get wilder and wilder. All are calculated to scandalise and shift the blame away from a culprit responsible for a massive failure of intelligence during the period of state capture.

Questions remain — why has Fraser not been arrested given the seriousness of the crimes to which he is accused in Volume 6 of the Zondo Report?

Did the President declare his capital gains and losses resulting from the crime, and was he entitled to Presidential Security detail at Phala Phala?

Did Rhoode go beyond the call of duty, and to what extant is Fraser involved?

Falsely accusing another person of a crime, is also a crime. Providing false testimony in an Affidavit is, yep, a crime.

This isn’t #Farmgate, it’s another #Spygate as in the Information Scandal.

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

SEE: Former Spy Boss Arthur Fraser attempts court challenge of Zondo Report

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.