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MBABANE – “We have elected to wait until this newspaper publishes evidence.”

This was a response given by Government Spokesperson Percy Simelane, regarding circulating reports that some millions belonging to deceased former Libya leader Muammar Gaddafi were stashed in the kingdom. Reports circulated like wildfire yesterday as South African publication, the Sunday Times, reported that Libyan military authorities had asked President Cyril Ramaphosa to help recover a stash of cash, estimated to about R442m, belonging to the late Libya President Gaddafi, that was now believed to be in Eswatini.


A high-ranking intelligence source allegedly told the Sunday Times that its investigations had revealed that the money had been moved in five tranches from Nkandla and transported to Eswatini. Gaddafi died while being chased by rebels in Tripoli in October 2011. The Sunday Times was unable to get comment from Zuma’s spokesperson, Vukile Mathabela. Ramaphosa’s spokesperson, Khusela Diko, confirmed that the president had travelled to Eswatini last month but would not confirm what transpired at that meeting with the country’s authorities or at the subsequent meeting at the airport. In 2013, IOL reported that Zuma told the National Assembly he knew nothing about the dollars of Libyan money that Gaddafi and his family were believed to have stashed in South Africa and neighbouring countries during his 42-year rule. This was after he was approached by officials from the Libyan government. Soon after Gaddafi’s death, the new Libyan government had embarked on a large-scale mission to recover legal and illegal assets in South Africa, the rest of Africa, the US and Europe.


Meanwhile, Eswatini Government Spokesperson Percy Simelane said they had elected to wait until the Sunday Times published evidence of the allegations made.  “It is that evidence that will make the story credible to us,” said Simelane through a text message. He said former President Zuma was still waiting for evidence to be published by the Times Sunday that he bought a mansion in Dubai. “Evidence has not been coming since last year after the publication claimed he owned a house there. We therefore need to be cautious,” said Simelane.

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