South African President Cyril Ramaphosa’s fate was hanging in the balance on Monday ahead of a meeting of the executive committee of the governing party to discuss allegations he may have committed misconduct and violated the oath of office.
The inquiry relates to findings that large sums of foreign currency were hidden at Ramaphosa’s private game farm and he failed to report the money missing when it was stolen in 2020.
Ramaphosa has denied wrongdoing and has not been charged with any crimes. He has said the money stolen was the proceeds of the sale of buffaloes and far less than the millions of dollars alleged when the theft came to light in June.
Ramaphosa said on Sunday he would attend the meeting of the African National Congress National Executive Committee (NEC) and would accept its decision.
“By lunchtime, depending on where we’ll be on the program, we will bring the treasurer general to come and do a doorstop with yourselves,” ANC spokesman Pule Mabe told reporters.
Party leaders and supporters of Ramaphosa clad in the colors of the ANC party were seen arriving at the venue of the meeting on Monday. Some supporters sang in support of Ramaphosa.
Having received firm backing from his allies within the party, Ramaphosa has vowed to fight on, with his spokesman saying the panel’s findings would be challenged.
Investors fear uncertainty and that any other president could slow down or reverse economic reforms and increase government spending and take on more debt at levels they deem unsustainable.
Despite the doubts raised over Ramaphosa’s integrity, he is still seen by investors at home and abroad as cleaner than any of his rivals.
South Africa’s main opposition liberal Democratic Alliance (DA) party said it had submitted a motion to dissolve the national assembly and reiterated its call for an early election.
“Parliament’s role is precisely to step up at times such as this… It can only do this by dissolving the National Assembly so that the president can call an early election,” said DA leader John Steenhuisen.
South Africa’s rand was trading stronger on the day, up 1.74% as of 0842 GMT, as expectations that Ramaphosa might resign were quashed.