Statement of the Thabo Mbeki Foundation on the Spurious Allegations by The Citizen Newspaper, February 01, 2018.

For Immediate Release:

On the 31st of January 2018 “The Citizen” Newspaper published an article under the heading “Mbeki Back In Business.” It also published an online version of the article- headlined “Thabo Mbeki Is On The Comeback Trail”. The article- written by Eric Naki- alleges among other things that former President Thabo Mbeki is serving as an advisor to new ANC President Cyril Ramaphosa, in a move analysts purportedly applaud, saying it brings optimism about SA’s political and economic future.

The Thabo Mbeki Foundation would like to put in on record that this is a spurious allegation that is devoid of any truth. This article is riddled with serious inaccuracies and a poor attempt to revise the content of the interview that President Mbeki conducted with the South African Broadcasting Corporation in Addis Ababa, which was a wide ranging interview about the challenges facing our Continent, in particular the issue of Illicit Financial Flows, the positive developments in the Continent, including the change of Leadership of the African National Congress.

It is in respect to the latter that The Citizen seeks to impose its own views, while presenting them as those of President Mbeki.

TMF wishes to place it on record that President Mbeki stated that the leadership of the ANC must be given an opportunity to deal with the issues that they themselves have raised: fighting corruption, the renewal of the ANC, the Unity of the ANC etc. He further urged the party’s Leadership to heed the ANC Stalwarts Declaration of November 2017- which was subsequently adopted by the ANC Veterans’ League. That declaration clearly identified the problems plaguing the organization and how they should be resolved. As part of the Veterans’ League of the ANC, President Mbeki would therefore welcome an opportunity for the Veterans of the movement to be advised by the current leadership of the ANC as to what they- as the Veterans- must do to assist the party they have served for most of their lives.

It is a matter of grave concern that a journalist would peddle a story which has no basis in reality. Historically and for many decades, the people throughout the world have depended and relied on the established media for their information and have naturally accepted what the media reports as objective facts which informs their reality and provides the basis on which they make decisions. Consequently, the mainstream media has enjoyed a dominant position in helping to form and shape public opinion. It is therefore regrettable that a Newspaper such as “The Citizen” chooses to operate outside of the ethics that govern media to report objectively and truthfully and instead choose to abuse the trust that has been bestowed upon the media by the public.

…ends//

ISSUED BY THE THABO MBEKI FOUNDATION: For further information, please contact: Mr. Thami Ntenteni, Head of Communication; Thabo Mbeki Foundation on: 011 486 1560 (Office Landline) and 083 256 3586 (Mobile).

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