The President's Keepers

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

The President's Keepers: Those keeping Zuma in power and out of prison
The Presidents Keeper.jpg
AuthorJacques Pauw
CountrySouth Africa
SubjectJacob Zuma, Corruption in South Africa, Espionage, Gupta family, Politics of South Africa
PublishedCape Town
PublisherNB Publishers
Publication date
29 October 2017
ISBN978-0-624-08303-0 (Paperback)

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[edit]

The book details the creation and functioning of a "shadow mafia state"[1] 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:

  1. The spy in the cold
  2. Projects Vodka, Pack and Psycho
  3. The shadow state
  4. Glimmers of horror
  5. Little altar boy
  6. President on a payroll
  7. I beg you, Mr President
  8. Tom's tempest
  9. The gentlemen gangster and his donkey
  10. Up in smoke
  11. Tom's tax bones
  12. The spiders in the centre of the web
  13. Somebody in a neighbourhood full of nobodies
  14. Gladiators
  15. Top Hawk down
  16. Jeremy of the Elsies and the woman of trouble
  17. Killer, KGB, and a guy in a crumpled suit
  18. 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.[2] 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.[3] SARS also stated that they would investigate initiating criminal charges against the author for publicising confidential tax records.[4] The actions by the State Security Agency and SARS were criticised as censorship by the civil society organisations the Right2Know Campaign[5] and Corruption Watch[6] as well as by the South African Communist Party.[7] 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.[6][8]

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[9] of State Security Agency's cease and desist order as readers sought to get a copy before it possibly being banned,[1] making the book an international best seller.[10] 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.[11] 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.[12]

Audited sales reach 193,895 while sales now exceed 200,000.[13]

Lists of entities mentioned in the book[edit]

A large number of entities is mentioned in the book, either in positive or negative context.[14]

Senior government officials[edit]

position name search hits index (printed first ed.)
President of South Africa Jacob Zuma 121 109–110,112,279–292
Commissioner of the South African Revenue Service Tom Moyane 36 11,79–80,82–86,89,111,114,118,130,136,156,167,169,173–174,178,187–188,207,209,211,217–219
Director-General of Department of State Security (South Africa) Arthur Fraser 23 11,16–17,22–23,28,32–40,43–45,47,49,51–53,54,55,57,159,171,227
Head of Internal Investigations City of Johannesburg Shadrack Sibiya 17 11,79,147,219,225,227,249,252–253,255,257,262,265,314–315,320
Deputy National Director at the National Prosecuting Authority of South Africa Nomgcobo Jiba 16 11,220,223,233,240–241,245–247,252,262,265,310
Minister of State Security (South Africa) David Mahlobo 15 48,50–51,54,56,157,163,198
Executive Director of the Independent Police Investigative Directorate (South Africa) Robert McBride 12 11,251,253,257,259,295,314–315,318,321
COO of South African Revenue Service Jonas Makwakwa 11 81,82,111,181–182
Part-time Legal Advisor at The Presidency (South Africa) Michael Hulley[15] 11 40,75,99,104,132,184,187,215
Minister of Public Works (South Africa) Nathi Nhleko 10 217–218,236,274,313
Minister of Arts and Culture (South Africa) Nathi Mthethwa 9 48,73,224,228,233,240,245,247,310
Special Director of the National Prosecuting Authority of South Africa Lawrence Mrwebi 9 11,222,223,233,240,245,247,310
Minister of Telecommunications and Postal Services (South Africa) Siyabonga Cwele 9 29,31,41,44,47–48,107
Ambassador of South Africa to Sweden[16] Faith Doreen Radebe 8 45,47–48,157,159,161,263
Director of the National Prosecuting Authority of South Africa Shaun Abrahams 8 244,275,310–312,316
Head of Foreign Branch of the State Security Agency (South Africa) Moe Shaik 8 39,40,72,320
Deputy President of South Africa Cyril Ramaphosa 6
Minister of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (South Africa) Des David van Rooyen 6 20,26,286,310,312,325
Minister of Police (South Africa) Fikile Mbalula 6 44,257,286,295,317,321
Executive Manager at South African Revenue Service Luther Lebelo 6 182,189,212,217
Deputy Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (South Africa) Bheki Cele 5 41,225–226,228–229
Minister in the Presidency (South Africa) Jeff Radebe 5 41,48,233,243,313
Legal Advisor at The Presidency (South Africa) Boniswe Makhene 5 132,146,147,163,199
Minister of Finance (South Africa) Malusi Gigaba 4 78,224,269
Minister of Mineral Resources (South Africa) Mosebenzi Zwane 4 202,325,327
CO at South African Revenue Service Hlengani Mathebula 4 174–175,177,192
Ambassador of South Africa to Japan[16] Thulani Dhomo 4
Public Protector (South Africa) Busisiwe Mkhwebane 3
Commissioner of the South African Police Service Lesetja Mothiba 3 291,298,305
Ambassador of South Africa to Poland[16] Simon Ntobela 3
Deputy Minister of Finance (South Africa) Sfiso Buthelezi 2
Deputy Director at the National Prosecuting Authority of South Africa Willie Homeyr 2 291,298,305
Director at the National Prosecuting Authority of South Africa Moipone Noko 2
Premier of the Free State (South Africa) Ace Magashule 2 40,128
Head of Communications at State Security Agency (South Africa) Brian Dube 2
CO at South African Revenue Service Jed Michaletos 1 192
Minister of Human Settlements (South Africa) Lindiwe Sisulu 1 32
Minister of Justice and Correctional Services (South Africa) Michael Masutha 1
Minister of Public Service and Administration (South Africa) Faith Muthambi 1 156
Minister of Social Development (South Africa) Bathabile Dlamini 1
Chief of the South African Defence Force Solly Shoke 1 73
Minister of Water and Sanitation (South Africa) Nomvula Mokonyane 1
Ambassador of South Africa to the Netherlands[16] Bruce Koloane 1
Political Council of South Africa to the UN[17] Clinton Swemmer 1 158

Other persons possibly still employed by the state[edit]

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[18] 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
Eric Mtholo 2 159–160
Ferdi Fryer 4 117,125,128,148
Prince Makhwathana 4 33,34,37,42,49,50
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
Killer Ximba 4 227,231,301
Navin Madhoe 3 263,266,267
former Head of KwaZulu-Natal Police Department Mmamonnye Ngobeni 3 263,274,276
Jan Mabula 1 222
former Acting CEO of Eskom and Colonel in the South African Army Brian Molefe[19] 1
former head of Police Crime Intelligence Division Richard Mdluli[20] 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[21] 8 134,232,258,284,288,291,295,317


sector name search hits index (printed first ed.)
cigarette manufacturer Amalgamated Tobacco Manufacturing 2 91
cigarette manufacturer British American Tobacco 4 90,127,142–145
cigarette manufacturer Carnilinx 54 129,142,144–145,167–168,188,191–196,198,326–327
cigarette manufacturer Delta Tobacco 3 95,129
high-tech manufacturer Gamma Group 1 35
Oakbay subsidiary Goldridge Trading 1 92
arms manufacturer Ferrostaal 4
airline Jet Airways 1 152
financial consulting KPMG 18 70–71,155,171,188,201,218
holding company Oakbay Investments 2 202,207
mining Aurora 7 214,215
mining Dithabeng Mining 2
mining Lonmin 2
mining Optimum Colliery 1
guarding services Royal Security 12 108–109,111–112,217
newspaper The New Age 2
newspaper The Sunday Times (South Africa) 59
IT security Siyangena Technologies 1 110
electronics SES Technologies 1
electrical utility Eskom 3 19,279,312
passenger rail Prasa 23 52,110
technology Sahara Computers (Oakbay) 5 204–205,271
law firm Hogan Lovells[22][23] 1


family names search hits index (printed first ed.)
Coetzee family Dirk 0
Engelke family Paul 0
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
Kao family Ching-Ho 0
Kathrada family Ahmed 0
Khoza family Irvin 1
Magashule family Ace, Tshepiso, Thato 0
Mandela family Nelson, Winnie, Zondwa 0
Mazzotti family Adriano 0
Mbalula family Fikile 0
McBride family Robert 0
Mdluli family Richard 0
Moodley family Roy, Mumsie 0
Ngobeni family Mmamonnye, Lucas 0
Ramogibe family Oupa 1
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[edit]

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
gangster Barry Tannenbaum 1 141
gangster Colin Stansfield 1 141
late former Commissioner of Police Jackie Selebi 3 38,115,134
gangster Jerome Booysen 1 166
gangster Mark Lifman 6 88,141,165,170,188,212
gangster Nafiz Modack[24] 2 ?
gangster Quinton Marinus 1 131,141,166
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[edit]

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[edit]


  • The book has been criticised as being factually incorrect and legal action is considered by the Fraser family.[25]
  • The Public Protector cautioned the public against purchasing the book.[26]

Timeline of developments since publication[edit]

  • 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.[27]
  • The Hawks search the Riebeek-Kasteel guesthouse and home of author Jacques Pauw on 28 February 2019.
  • 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.[28]
  • Announced on 16 March 2018 that former President Jacob Zuma would be charged for corruption relating to the Arms Deal.[29]
  • On 19 March 2018 President Cyril Ramaphosa suspends SARS Commissioner Tom Moyane who threatens to take legal action.[30]
  • On 26 March 2018 Hawks serve an indictment on former President Jacob Zuma to appear in Durban High.[31]
  • On 13 April 2018 Setlhomamaru Dintwe approaches the courts to prevent Arthur Fraser from interfering in his work.[32]
  • On 15 April 2018 a raid was carried out at the Gupta family home in Saxonwold.[33]
  • On 7 September 2018 SARS dropped litigation against Pauw.<[34]
  • 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.[35]
  • On 10 October 2019 US imposes sanctions on South Africa’s Gupta family.[36]
  • On 29 September 2020, Mdluli, who previously convicted with former policeman Mthembeni Mthunzi,[37] was sentenced to 5 years in prison.[38]
  • 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.[39]


  1. ^ a b Shange, Naledi (6 November 2017). "Zuma book sales spike as court day looms". TimesLive. Retrieved 2017-11-07.
  2. ^ de Wet, Phillip (3 November 2017). "Zuma hears no evil in Parliament". Mail and Guardian. Retrieved 7 November 2017.
  3. ^ "State Security Agency wants Zuma book pulled from stores". Moneyweb. 2017-11-03. Retrieved 2017-11-07.
  4. ^ BEKEZELA PHAKATHI AND ERNEST MABUZA (3 November 2017). "'The President's Keepers': SARS to consider laying charges over exposé". TimesLive. Retrieved 2017-11-07.
  5. ^ Nicolaides, Gia (4 November 2017). "R2K slams SSA's threats against Zuma book". Right2Know. Retrieved 2017-11-07.
  6. ^ a b Bornman, Jan (3 November 2017). "Controversial Zuma book 'will stay on the shelves'". News24. Retrieved 2017-11-07.
  7. ^ "SACP slams SSA for trying to censor Jacques Pauw book | Hibiscus Coast Seconds". Retrieved 2017-11-07.
  8. ^ NB Publishers (2017-11-06). "President's Keepers: NB Publishers' response to SSA – DOCUMENTS | Politicsweb". Retrieved 2017-11-07.
  9. ^ "First 20,000 'The President's Keepers' books sold". 5 November 2017. Retrieved 2017-11-07.
  10. ^ "Jacques Pauw's Zuma Book on International Best Sellers' List". Retrieved 2017-11-07.
  11. ^ "Pirate copy of President's Keepers goes viral on social media – NEWS & ANALYSIS | Politicsweb". 4 November 2017. Retrieved 2017-11-07.
  12. ^ "The President's Keepers: Death threats won't make Pauw back down". Retrieved 2017-11-07.
  13. ^ "'The President's Keepers' Just Broke A South African Record –". 22 May 2018. Retrieved 2018-06-18.
  14. ^ "A visual summary of The President's Keepers by Jacques Pauw | The Media Online". Retrieved 2018-06-18.
  15. ^ "Michael Hulley: From taxi lawyer to JZ's man". Retrieved 25 September 2018.
  16. ^ a b c d
  17. ^ "South African Representation Abroad". Retrieved 25 September 2018.
  18. ^ Bateman, Barry. "Morris Tshabalala named as arrested former Crime Intelligence officer". Retrieved 25 September 2018.
  19. ^ "Brian Molefe joins the army". Retrieved 25 September 2018.
  20. ^ "WATCH: SAPS finally axes Richard Mdluli". Retrieved 25 September 2018.
  21. ^ "Crime intelligence officer with links to Phahlane arrested for fraud". Retrieved 25 September 2018.
  22. ^ "Hogan Lovells' role in the Makwakwa investigation". Retrieved 25 September 2018.
  23. ^ "EXCLUSIVE: Boycott Hogan Lovells - Peter Hain - IOL Business Report". Retrieved 25 September 2018.
  24. ^ reporter, Citizen. "Duduzane Zuma met with suspected underworld figure Modack – report". Retrieved 25 September 2018.
  25. ^ "The President's Keepers: Arthur Fraser's family considering legal action". Retrieved 2017-12-03.
  26. ^ "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.
  27. ^ "EXCLUSIVE: Boycott Hogan Lovells - Peter Hain | IOL Business Report". Retrieved 2018-06-18.
  28. ^ Bateman, Barry. "Jonas Makwakwa resigns from Sars". Retrieved 2018-06-18.
  29. ^ 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.
  30. ^ "Moyane threatens Ramaphosa with legal action over suspension". Fin24. Retrieved 2018-06-18.
  31. ^
  32. ^ ://
  33. ^
  34. ^ Etheridge, Jenna. "'I was never scared' - Jacques Pauw after SARS drops litigation". News24. Retrieved 2021-05-06.
  35. ^
  36. ^
  37. ^
  38. ^
  39. ^ Soodyal, Nushera (December 17, 2020). "Corruption-accused Mmamonnye Ngobeni, Thoshan Panday back in court". East Coast Radio. Retrieved December 24, 2020.