Dare I say it? Ramaphosa is a hoaxer

It has become a dilemma for most in the media to call President Cyril Ramaphosa a hoaxer when he deserves it.

More like Ramaphoaxer – as the native Englishmen often spit his name in adulation.
It’s like being asked to choose between the lesser of two evils: do we express our disdain for Ramaphosa’s actions, or do we hold off on criticism and risk allowing him to continue unchecked?

It is a difficult decision. Most do not want to be seen as attacking the hero who saved us from state capture, in the words of Chief Justice Raymond Zondo.
But his credibility will always be at stake when he makes false statements or promises not fulfilled.

Yet it is difficult to call him out without being accused of bias or pro-state capture. It is like a permanent trap.

But is critical to ensure that the president is held accountable for his actions.
This is essential to maintaining public trust in the government.

So, here we go.
On Monday, the Presidency issued a statement that Ramaphosa withdrew from the review of the Parliament’s Section 89 panel report.

This is in the wake of the public outcry following the report’s content, which contained a number of adverse findings against Ramaphosa.

His public image of being anti-corruption was tarnished by the fact that he had a stash of  undeclared US dollars stitched inside a leather couch at his Phala Phala game farm.

On March 1, Zondo’s court decided not to engage with the merits of Ramaphosa’s application to set aside the report of the independent panel of the National Assembly.
It was not within its exclusive jurisdiction as Ramaphosa had not made a compelling case for direct access to the highest court in the land.

An accountable President would have referred back to the high court to review the matter.
A president who had nothing to hide would have followed the rule of law as advised by the apex court.

Not Ramaphosa.

The Presidency only says Ramaphosa respects the Constitutional Court’s ruling.
But soon thereafter, Ramaphosa washes his hands like the Biblical Pilate and pleads for the fifth.
Apparently he got advise – and he has accepted – that the Panel Report and all issues associated with it have become moot.
As he no longer had to worry about impeachment, the report has no practical or legal consequences.

But how did we get here?
The ANC MPs on December 13, 2022, in the National Assembly, rejected the motion to refer the Panel Report to an Impeachment Committee.
Ironically, their reasoning was that Ramaphosa is reviewing the report at the Constitutional Court.

They implored citizens to hang tight and withhold judgment until the credibility of the findings against Ramaphosa was tested by Zondo and crew.
Today, as a result of both Ramaphosa and the ANC’s actions, the Section 89 Panel Report suddenly carries no weight in the law.

Blatantly, the ANC and Ramaphosa are sweeping the Phala Phala dollars from inside the sofa to beneath the rug.

Both parties are determined to avoid any further scrutiny of Ramaphosa and will abuse their powers or the courts to do so, if it so fits.

Understandably, it will take guts for Ramaphosa’s cheerleaders to preach the truth.
Yet his current actions are in stark contrast to his presidential campaign promises of a “new dawn” and “clean government”.

In reality, the only new dawn in South Africa is when the sun rises each morning.

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