The South African Reserve Bank SARB and the National Treasury on Tuesday issued a joint statement in which they responded to allegations made by politician and businessman Tokyo Sexwale in an interview with a local news agency.
While speaking on Sunday to the host of eNCA, J.J. Tabane, Sexwale made allegations to the effect that trillions of rands that had been deposited into the SARB had gone missing. The ANC veteran further clarified that the said funds that had been earmarked for school and university fees as well as assisting the poor had been raised with what he called powerful families. He added in the televised interview that part of this fund called the Heritage Fund had been stolen from inside the central bank and that both the current and former president and finance ministers were aware of this issue which had become a police matter saying, “we are busy with it,” in an apparent reference to the fact that investigations were in progress.
However, on Tuesday, in a combined statement, the central bank and the National Treasury rubbished the claims made by the former minister of human settlements saying that all this smirked of a scam. In their response, they said, “Over the years, National Treasury and the SARB have received many such requests for, or promises, of billions (and now trillions) of rands or dollars, and from experience regard these as simply scams. Any claim that such funds are meant for deserving causes such as Covid-19 relief, social grants, or grants for free education are simply empty promises, to secure the interest of the potential victim.”
Furthermore, they added that they had received correspondence from Mr. Sexwale and others referring to a fund that was named the White Spiritual Boy Fund which had been set up by a foreign donor. The two institutions added that the central bank had conducted investigations and had learned that there were no funds that had been deposited into the bank. In addition, they also came to the knowledge that from their experience in such matters, this could only be a scam.
In conclusion of the matter, the National Treasury and the South African Reserve Bank stated that if Mr. Sexwale and his donor still insisted on the existence of this fund, the onus was on them to prove this in writing. In addition, the monetary institutions said, the two (Sexwale and his donor) would need to provide certified copies of identification and citizenship of the said donor in line with current anti-money laundering laws in the country. “Allegations of theft of non-existent funds have no validity,” they concluded.