Revelations today that the ANC allegedly profited to the tune of R2 million via a “donation” from VBS Bank towards their election campaign illustrates to the people of South Africa the true nature of the ANC. It appears President Ramaphosa’s commitment to rooting out corruption continues to ring hollow, with more empty promises from a failing ANC that steals from the poor and vulnerable to make themselves rich.

It is time for President Cyril Ramaphosa to take immediate and decisive action. We therefore call on the President to without delay lay criminal charges against those who engineered this corrupt kickback – including the Minister of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs, Zweli Mkhize. The National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) now needs to act against those in the ANC who stole money from VBS bank accounts of poor, vulnerable and elderly people and funnelled it to rich politicians, politically connected businesspersons, and their associates.

Mr Ramaphosa must also instruct ANC Treasurer-General, Paul Mashatile, to guarantee that the party pays back every cent of this money within the next 7 days.

It is difficult not to connect the dots between ANC-run municipalities investing millions in VBS, and this R2million kick back to the ANC. Therefore, this too must be investigated by the NPA.

The DA will not relent in our pursuit of justice and accountability in this VBS scandal. President Ramaphosa’s alleged prior knowledge of the unfoldings at VBS – from as early as 2017 – requires due consideration. The President has a legislative duty to report corrupt transactions in terms of section 34(1) of Prevention and Combatting of Corrupt Activities Act 12 of 2004 (PACCA). If he failed to do so, he may well be criminally liable.

When President Ramaphosa appears in Parliament to answer questions next week, I will look to ask him “On what date did he first become aware of the involvement of executives in corruption and looting at VBS Bank, and what date did he subsequently act in this regard?” The President must answer to the people of South Africa.

Sadly, the VBS heist is just one example of an almost daily occurrence of corruption, cronyism and nepotism under the ANC – all which steals opportunity from South Africans.

President Ramaphosa has now been afforded a golden opportunity to prove to South Africans that he is more than just hot air and empty promises. We hope the President takes this opportunity and acts by laying criminal charges against his fellow comrades, and ensuring this R2 million kickback to the ANC is paid back.

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