An ex-spy chief filed a judicial case against South Africa’s president on Wednesday, accusing him of “kidnapping” and bribing criminals who stole millions of dollars from one of his estates.
“I have taken the unprecedented step to lay criminal charges against his excellency, the president of the Republic of South Africa,” Cyril Ramaphosa, former intelligence head Arthur Fraser said in a statement.
According to Fraser, on February 9, 2020, criminals used a domestic servant to break into Ramaphosa’s farm north of Johannesburg, where they discovered and stole more than $4 million.
Fraser has accused Ramaphosa of orchestrating “suspect kidnappings, interrogation on his property, and bribery.”
“The president concealed the crime from the South African police service and/or South African revenue service and thereafter paid the culprits for their silence,” Arthur Fraser said.
Fraser’s lawyer, Eric Mabuza, confirmed to AFP that the legal complaint was lodged at a Johannesburg police station on Wednesday.
Fraser rose through the ranks of the country’s penal services after a career in intelligence.
He was the one who ordered the release on medical parole of former South African President Jacob Zuma in September, just two months after he was sentenced to 15 months in prison for contempt for refusing to appear in an inquiry into financial misconduct during his reign.
After a succession of corruption scandals, Zuma was compelled to resign in 2018.
Ramaphosa, his successor, has promised to battle corruption. However, he has been summoned for interrogation in connection with the inquiry into alleged stealing from public funds under the Zuma administration.