Only Hawks, police can unravel any criminality in Phala Phala saga: Dr Koma

todayAugust 22, 2023 37

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Political Analyst Dr. Sam Koma says the Hawks and the police are the only authorities that can shed light on whether there was any criminality in the Phala Phala saga.

Koma was weighing in on the uproar over the Reserve Bank’s probe into whether there were exchange control violations during the theft of multi-million dollars at the President’s Phala Phala farm in 2020.

In the report, the Reserve Bank said it could not conclude that the Exchange Control Regulations were breached.
The findings raised the ire of many South Africans who believe that the bank has been compromised.

But Dr Koma says the bank stuck to its mandate and South Africans should have trust and confidence in state institutions to execute their constitutional mandates without fear, favour or prejudice.

He says citizens should hold these institutions accountable through the judiciary if any them falter in their duty.
The scholar believes that only the Hawks and the police can give South Africans answers to the questions they have on whether there was anything untoward either in the purchase of buffalos at the President’s farm and the subsequent theft of the cash from that deal.

The DA says the SARB’s decision to not to release the full report on the saga raises questions about transparency and accountability.

“The Reserve Bank’s finding hinges on the absence of a perfected transaction, which means that the legal prerequisites for the transaction to be completed were not met. Specifically, the conditions for a perfected transaction were unfulfilled due to the non-delivery of a buffalo to the infamous businessman Hazim Mustafa. This led to the Reserve Bank’s conclusion that there was no legal obligation under the exchange control regulations of 1961 to declare the foreign currency.

However, the suspicious circumstance of the money being stuffed into the President’s couch, and the possibility that cash was held beyond a legislated limit, seem to have been beyond the scope of the Reserve Bank’s investigation. The narrow focus of its investigation also raises concerns about its thoroughness and whether any political considerations arose,” says the official opposition in a statement.

DA Shadow Minister of Finance, Dr Dion George, says the party will not let this matter rest and will pose questions to the SARB when the institution’s officials appear before the Standing Committee on Finance next week.

The EFF has rejected the report, slamming it as nonsensical.

The red berets’ Yoliswa Yako says they will take the bank to court in a bid to force it to do its job and not undermine foreign exchange laws.

African Transformation Movement (ATM) says the findings are bizarre as they do not make sense.

ATM spokesperson, Zama Ntshona, says it is baffling how the SARB, which they regard as one of the sharpest minds in the country, would end up with such findings.

The governing ANC has, however, welcomed the report, saying it anticipates that all baseless accusations against the President will be dispelled.

“The determination by the South African Reserve Bank that President Cyril Ramaphosa did
not violate any Exchange Control Regulations is unambiguous and definitive. The African
National Congress expresses its satisfaction with this conclusion and anticipates that all
baseless accusations will be dispelled.”

Written by: Nokwazi Qumbisa

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