Basson: Ramaphosa's leaked emails don't mean president broke the law

Basson: Ramaphosa's leaked emails don't mean president broke the law

- News24 recently published leaked e-mails between Cyril Ramaphosa and his campaign manager

- The publication's editor-in-chief says the e-mails do not mean that Ramaphosa broke the law

- However, he says they do challenge Ramaphosa's claim that he was not directly involved in fundraising

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E-mails published recently by News24 have shed light on how some of the funds for Cyril Ramaphosa's election campaign were raised and where some of the money came from.

However, the publication's editor-in-chief Adriaan Basson says the e-mails do not prove that the president did anything illegal.

Basson made this argument during a new interview with Radio 702's Bongani Bingwa.

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The leaked e-mails include conversations between Ramaphosa and his campaign manager concerning fundraising, Briefly.co.za has gathered. The correspondence includes name of potential donors to his campaign.

In the e-mails, Ramaphosa is asked about certain individuals and whether the campaign should approach them for funds. According to Basson, these exchanges "bring into question the claims that [Ramaphosa] was kept at arm's length in this campaign."

Additionally, the emails suggest that Ramaphosa himself was directly involved in fundraising. For example, in one of the messages, Ramaphosa's assistant asks him to approach a particular UK businessman to ask for campaign donations. 

The e-mails have caused a public stir and have been doing the rounds among Ramaphosa's political opponents, but Basson says they do not mean the president did anything illegal.

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However, they do undermine Ramaphosa's claim that he was not directly involved in his campaign's fundraising. This is relevant, as one of those who reportedly donated to the campaign was former Bosasa CEO Gavin Watson.

This payment has since become a major thorn in the president's side and the centre of a investigation by the Public Protector.

While these leaked e-mails do not prove that Ramaphosa broke the law, it does seem likely that the donation will continue to give the president headaches for the foreseeable future.

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Source: Briefly.co.za

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