The President's Keepers
|Subject||Jacob Zuma, Corruption in South Africa, Espionage, Gupta family, Politics of South Africa|
|29 October 2017|
The President's Keepers: Those Keeping Zuma in Power and out of Prison a 2017 book by Jacques Pauw, an investigative journalist from South Africa about allegedly corrupt and compromised power networks in the government of President Jacob Zuma.
Background and synopsis
The book details the creation and functioning of a "shadow mafia state" created by and surrounding President Zuma. It makes a number of serious allegations concerning the South African president such as that he did not pay taxes during his presidency, that he was illegally paid R1 million (US$70,000) a month by a private company whilst president, that he failed to pay back loans and that he has poor financial acumen.
The book also makes a number of accusations concerning associates of the president, such as: that the Gupta family groomed the children of African National Congress (ANC) politicians to gain political influence; that Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma's 2017 campaign for ANC president is funded by a cigarette company engaged in corruption; and that a significant proportion of people appointed to power by the Zuma administration have been convicted, or have allegations against them, of engaging in criminal activity. It also contains details of the state capture of the South African Revenue Service (SARS) and the wasteful creation of a one billion rand (around US$ 70,000,000) spy agency within the State Security Agency that engaged in widespread corruption.
The body of the book is divided into eighteen chapters with an epilogue at the end. They are:
- The spy in the cold
- Projects Vodka, Pack and Psycho
- The shadow state
- Glimmers of horror
- Little altar boy
- President on a payroll
- I beg you, Mr President
- Tom's tempest
- The gentlemen gangster and his donkey
- Up in smoke
- Tom's tax bones
- The spiders in the centre of the web
- Somebody in a neighbourhood full of nobodies
- Top Hawk down
- Jeremy of the Elsies and the woman of trouble
- Killer, KGB, and a guy in a crumpled suit
- The one who laughs while grinding his enemies
Within four days of the book's publication it was cited in Parliamentary questions directed at the president by the opposition Democratic Alliance. On the 3 November 2017 the State Security Agency issued a cease and desist order to prevent more books being sold, arguing that the book contravened the Intelligence Service Act. SARS also stated that they would investigate initiating criminal charges against the author for publicising confidential tax records. The actions by the State Security Agency and SARS were criticised as censorship by the civil society organisations the Right2Know Campaign and Corruption Watch as well as by the South African Communist Party. Book stores and publishers refused to obey the cease and desist order arguing that the book was factual and its information was in the public interest.
The threat of censorship caused a spike in sales of the book causing it to sell out of its first print run of 20,000 books within 24 hours of State Security Agency's cease and desist order as readers sought to get a copy before it possibly being banned, making the book an international best seller. The resulting shortage of books combined with the public fear of censorship resulted in a digitally pirated version of the book being widely shared in the few days following the cease and desist order. A launch of the book on the evening of Wednesday 8 November 2017 was cancelled after a power outage. During the launch, Pauw told attendees that he expected to spend years fighting legal battles.
Following its publication the author, Jacques Pauw, stated that he had received death threats from anonymous sources.
Audited sales reach 193,895 while sales now exceed 200,000.
Lists of entities mentioned in the book
A large number of entities is mentioned in the book, either in positive or negative context.
Senior government officials
Other persons possibly still employed by the state
It is difficult to confirm if the following persons were still paid by the state at the time of publication. These include:
|position||name||search hits||index (printed first ed.)|
|alleged SSA agent||Barnard Mokwena||3||162|
|SSA agent 5332||Belinda Walter||17||118,129,140–142,144,146,148,154,157,167–168,196–197|
|alleged SSA agent||George Darmanovich||2||148,158,235|
|alleged SSA agent||Graham Minnaar||2||117–118|
|alleged NIA agent||John Galloway||3||35,49|
|alleged SSA agent||Ms C.F. Fraser||1||35|
|former SARS employee and alleged SSA agent||Mandisa Mokwena||3||—|
|Inspector General of Intelligence at SSA||Setlhomamaru Dintwe||1||—|
|alleged SSA agent||Peter Silenga||2||—|
|SSA agent 5435||Rian Stander||1||159|
|apartheid spy RS452||Vanessa Brereton||1||40|
|SSA agent Martie Wallace||—||2||33–34|
|alleged SSA agent||Monde Gadini||5||134,146–147,163,199|
|alleged Police Crime Intelligence agent||Anthony Zimu||1||299|
|alleged Police Crime Intelligence agent||Morris Tshabalala||3||295,303,307|
|alleged Police Crime Intelligence agent||Mthembeni Mthunzi||5||227,301|
|alleged Police Crime Intelligence agent||Timmy Marimuthu||2||228,230,301|
|former Head of the Hawks (South Africa)||Berning Ntlemeza||19||11,134,224,251,255,259,268,273,287,291,295,311,315–316,319,321|
|former Head of the Hawks (South Africa)||Prince Mokotedi||5||11,241,244,314–316|
|former Head of the National Prosecuting Authority (South Africa)||Mxolisi Nxasana||5||11,78,241,311,312|
|former Head of KwaZulu-Natal Police Department||Mmamonnye Ngobeni||3||263,274,276|
|former Acting CEO of Eskom and Colonel in the South African Army||Brian Molefe||1||—|
|former head of Police Crime Intelligence Division||Richard Mdluli||35||11,221–222,224–226,230,234,237,239–240,245,247,249,252,257,263–264,268,295,298,300–302,305,307,310|
|former SABC MD News||Snuki Zikalala||1||21|
|ex acting Commissioner of the South African Police Service||Khomotso Phahlane||8||134,232,258,284,288,291,295,317|
|family||names||search hits||index (printed first ed.)|
|Fraser family||Arthur, Natasha, Barry, Lyle, Geraldine, Ms C.F.||1||—|
|Gupta family||Ajay, Atul, Rajesh, nephew Vega||25||20–22,44,82,88,107,114,121,131,136–139,152–153,183,191,201–203,206,270–273,285–287,312,320324-325,328|
|Magashule family||Ace, Tshepiso, Thato||0||—|
|Mandela family||Nelson, Winnie, Zondwa||0||—|
|Moodley family||Roy, Mumsie||0||—|
|Ngobeni family||Mmamonnye, Lucas||0||—|
|Shaik family||Schabir, Moe||0||—|
|Van Loggerenberg family||Johann||0||—|
|Zuma family||Jacob, Kate, Thobeka, MaNtuli, Nkosazana, Khulubuse, Duduzane and Shanice, Edward||8||—|
Private individuals not mentioned above
|role in book||name||search hits||index (printed first ed.)|
|ex editor||Phylicia Oppelt||2||145,156|
|ex journalist||Malcolm Rees||4||—|
|ex journalist||Stephan Hofstatter||6||149,156–157,249,265|
|ex journalist||Mzilikazi wa Afrika||5||156,249,265|
|ex journalist||Piet Rampedi||4||156|
|convicted criminal||Christiaan Prinsloo||2||282|
|playboy businessman||Fana Hlongwane||2||215|
|convicted drug dealer||Glenn Agliotti||5||115,117,119,121,141,178|
|convicted criminal||Radovan Krejčíř||7||42,117,141,167,178,232,314|
|convicted gang boss (not the American sportsman)||Lloyd Hill||5||92,93,130,131|
|late gangster||Lolly Jackson||4||42,141,178,314|
|late gangster||Cyril Beeka||3||141,165,171|
|late former Commissioner of Police||Jackie Selebi||3||38,115,134|
|alleged tobacco smuggler||Azeem Amodcaram||9||82,85,87,89,92,95,114,188|
|late Minister of Defence||Joe Modise||1||—|
|former Scorpions (South Africa) boss||Leonard McCarthy||1||39|
|former ANC MP||Vytjie Mentor||2||285|
|former Minister of Finance||Pravin Gordhan||24||21,78–79,82,91,97,135,141,155,175,189,207,214,218,286,296,310–311,316–317|
|late daughter of struggle comrade||Khwezi||4||61|
|DRC "businessman"||Toshan Panday||4||263,266,267|
Amounts of money mentioned in the book
In an effort to calculate the monetary impact the following table lists the amounts mentioned in the book. An effort is made not to list duplicate amounts. (Again the page references are from the first printed edition.)
|amount||name||note||pp. (printed first ed.)|
|R 3 000 000 000||—||tobacco tax evasion||90|
|R 1 800 000 000||Robert Huang||2015 tax bill||185|
|R 1 700 000 000||Bheki Cele||police lease deals scandal||47|
|R 388 000 000||Mark Lifman||2015 tax bill||166|
|R 70 000 000||(Gupta) Oakbay||2017 VAT refund||207–210|
|R 63 881 503||Jacob Zuma||2012 tax bill||104|
Places mentioned in the book
- Musanda "The Farm", Rietvlei Dam, Pretoria. http://www.politicsweb.co.za/documents/zuma-congratulates-the-spooks
- The book has been criticised as being factually incorrect and legal action is considered by the Fraser family.
- The Public Protector cautioned the public against purchasing the book.
Timeline of developments since publication
- Reported on 12 February 2018 that the Johannesburg branch of the Bank of Baroda would stop trading on 31 March 2018.
- Reported on 16 February 2018 that Gupta owned Sahara Computers have quietly closed down earlier and abandoned headquarters advertised for-sale or to-let.
- Reported on 16 February 2018 that Ajay Gupta left South Africa from OR Tambo Airport on 6 February 2018.
- Hawks raid Gupta family Saxonwold home in early morning hours of 14 February 2018
- Jacob Zuma resigned as President of South Africa during a late night media briefing held at the Union Buildings at 22h00 on 14 February 2018.
- Cyril Ramaphosa was elected President of South Africa on 15 February 2018.
- Peter Hain calls for boycott of Hogan Lovells on 20 February 2018.
- The Hawks search the Riebeek-Kasteel guesthouse and home of author Jacques Pauw on 28 February 2019. https://www.iol.co.za/news/politics/hawks-raid-jacques-pauws-home-over-confidential-information-13530507
- Nineteen Gupta owned companies approach the High Court on 1 March 2018 in an attempt to prevent the Bank of Baroda from leaving South Africa.
- Reported on 14 March 2018 that Jonas Makwakwa resigned for personal reasons after allegations of receiving R600000.
- Announced on 16 March 2018 that former President Jacob Zuma would be charged for corruption relating to the Arms Deal.
- On 19 March 2018 President Cyril Ramaphosa suspends SARS Commissioner Tom Moyane who threatens to take legal action.
- On 26 March 2018 Hawks serve an indictment on former President Jacob Zuma to appear in Durban High.
- On 13 April 2018 Setlhomamaru Dintwe approaches the courts to prevent Arthur Fraser from interfering in his work.
- On 15 April 2018 a raid was carried out at the Gupta family home in Saxonwold.
- On 7 September 2018 SARS dropped litigation against Pauw.<
- On 30 April 2019 it was reported that Nedbank have served notice on Arthur Fraser notifying him of their intention to close his bank account on 22 May 2019.
- On 10 October 2019 US imposes sanctions on South Africa’s Gupta family.
- On 29 September 2020, Mdluli, who previously convicted with former policeman Mthembeni Mthunzi, was sentenced to 5 years in prison.
- On 17 December 2020, former KwaZulu-Natal police commissioner Mmamonnye Ngobeni and her co-defendant, Durban businessman Thoshan Panday, returned to court on corruption charges.
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- "State Security Agency wants Zuma book pulled from stores". Moneyweb. 2017-11-03. Retrieved 2017-11-07.
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- "SACP slams SSA for trying to censor Jacques Pauw book | Hibiscus Coast Seconds". www.hibiscuscoastseconds.co.za. Retrieved 2017-11-07.
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- "Pirate copy of President's Keepers goes viral on social media – NEWS & ANALYSIS | Politicsweb". www.politicsweb.co.za. 4 November 2017. Retrieved 2017-11-07.
- "The President's Keepers: Death threats won't make Pauw back down". www.enca.com. Retrieved 2017-11-07.
- "'The President's Keepers' Just Broke A South African Record – 2oceansvibe.com". www.2oceansvibe.com. 22 May 2018. Retrieved 2018-06-18.
- "A visual summary of The President's Keepers by Jacques Pauw | The Media Online". themediaonline.co.za. Retrieved 2018-06-18.
- "Michael Hulley: From taxi lawyer to JZ's man". Retrieved 25 September 2018.
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- "WATCH: SAPS finally axes Richard Mdluli". Retrieved 25 September 2018.
- "Crime intelligence officer with links to Phahlane arrested for fraud". Retrieved 25 September 2018.
- "Hogan Lovells' role in the Makwakwa investigation". Retrieved 25 September 2018.
- "EXCLUSIVE: Boycott Hogan Lovells - Peter Hain - IOL Business Report". Retrieved 25 September 2018.
- reporter, Citizen. "Duduzane Zuma met with suspected underworld figure Modack – report". Retrieved 25 September 2018.
- "The President's Keepers: Arthur Fraser's family considering legal action". www.enca.com. Retrieved 2017-12-03.
- "Public Protector's 'Don't Buy The President's Keepers' Tweet Taken Out Of Context -- Spokesperson". HuffPost South Africa. 2017-11-06. Retrieved 2018-06-18.
- "EXCLUSIVE: Boycott Hogan Lovells - Peter Hain | IOL Business Report". Retrieved 2018-06-18.
- Bateman, Barry. "Jonas Makwakwa resigns from Sars". Retrieved 2018-06-18.
- Mahr, Krista (2018-03-16). "Jacob Zuma to face 16 counts of corruption over arms deal". The Telegraph. ISSN 0307-1235. Retrieved 2018-06-18.
- "Moyane threatens Ramaphosa with legal action over suspension". Fin24. Retrieved 2018-06-18.
- Etheridge, Jenna. "'I was never scared' - Jacques Pauw after SARS drops litigation". News24. Retrieved 2021-05-06.
- Soodyal, Nushera (December 17, 2020). "Corruption-accused Mmamonnye Ngobeni, Thoshan Panday back in court". East Coast Radio. Retrieved December 24, 2020.