Mamphela Ramphele cartoon

Mamphela Ramphele announces her R55 Million net worth and urges Jacob Zuma to be more transparent too

Mamphela’s Millions – Join the Gang, or Not?

Another week, another Zapiro cartoon depicting a shower-headed Jacob Zuma raping the South African justice system. But what are the alternatives? Where is the credible opposition? More than a few think it may lie in the warm, wealthy hands of Dr Mamphela Ramphele.

Mamphela Ramphele recently launched her political party, interestingly named Agang. No, it was not a name conceived after a rap concert and several rounds of tequila. It means “to build”, in Sotho. Wonkie is certain that Benenson, the campaign strategy firm that supported Obama, and that has now been hired by Ramphele will have a field day coming up with innovative campaign slogans.

Ramphele made the news last week by publicly announcing her net worth to be R55 Million. She then urged President Zuma to declare his financial interests. On the surface, it appeared like a gesture to promote transparency – something that is much needed in the corrupt local political landscape. Those that dug a little deeper may have been quite surprised with what they discovered.

Firstly, Forbes magazine’s 2011 Richest Women in Africa list had Ramphele right up there. Except, their economists calculated her net worth to be about 10 times more: R500 Million. Further, Forbes Africa editor Chris Bishop has made it clear that the figure was not an unfortunate typo.

So what happened in the last two years? Did Mamphela go on a wild spending spree and buy R445 Million worth of boerewors rolls to feed the poor in Africa? Or perhaps there are several blind trusts in some offshore haven holding millions in the name of her adorable puppy? Who knows, and who cares – but so much for declared transparency.

Secondly, Mamphela certainly has an impressive pedigree: anti-apartheid activist; academic; one of the founders of the Black Consciousness Movement; medical doctor; and former Managing Director of the World Bank. All interesting roles, but it does beg the question – how exactly did she make all those millions – even if there were only 55 of them?

It turns out that she was the beneficiary of more than just one or two lucrative BEE deals. Again, nothing wrong with that on the face of it – but hardly appropriate if you’re moaning about the government’s BEE policies, and happily slipping both hands in the same till. The question is not one of legality but one of consistency.

As expected, the ANC replied with some meaningless remarks by Jackson Mthembu and a warm, loving smile from Jacob Zuma.

Wonkie is curious to know what you think about Agang and Mamphela Ramphele. Do you think she stands a chance in next year’s election? Do you trust that she could get the job done, properly? Please take part in our poll below, and be sure to leave your more detailed views in the comments section.

What do you think of Mamphela Ramphele, and her net worth statement?

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Related articles on South African politics and the Opposition to the ANC:

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  2. DA makes headway in local elections
  3. Poor DA strategy
  4. ANC strategy

COMMENT on Mamphela Ramphele, her net worth statement, and Agang.

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Comments

  1. She was ANC at some stage was she not? So that makes her as corrupt as the rest of them. She is not offering to share her millions with her underprivileged “brothers and sisters” is she? The only good thing about this, is that the every time another “old” ANC supporter starts a new party and they get votes it makes the hold the ANC has smaller. That there will be even more corruptions is a given fact. The money will only goes into different pockets. But the people who really needs the money and for who it is suppose to be, will not see one single cent of that money. Viva Corruption.

  2. If she doesn’t know about the R445m then she won’t miss it, it can be used towards unemployment.

  3. M D FRASER says:

    Never mind the discrepancy between R 55 million and R 500 million for her own nett worth.
    What about her family members and family trusts.
    There is not much “transparency” here and I don’t trust her at all.
    On top of that she’s arrogant. When approached by other political parties, principally the DA, to form an alliance against the ANC, she replied that she is not a ‘joiner’, but if others wanted to join her, on her terms, she would consider it.
    No thanks !

  4. Willie Labuschagne says:

    Let her rather tell us where the zillions of Rand came from. From rags to riches in such a short lifetime?

    • When she first came onto the political scene, it was reported that she had sat on numerous boards as well as that she had headed certain corporations.
      Those corporations unfortunately admitted, once she had gone on to greener pastures, that she had sucked at her job(s).
      That is where her money came from in a short life time.
      Her capability is possibly of greater concern, only time will tell.

  5. No thanks

  6. this woman deserve a sit in parliament. when you look at her achievement you can tell that she is a hard worker and has good motives with AGANG. let South Africa give her a chance and see what she has for the whole country. the thruth is that South Africa needs women of honor like Mamphela to lead the country. Don’t judge but support her since everybody has seen that she has good vision for the country.

    • M D FRASER says:

      That’s precisely the question. Are her motives really good ? I think she’s far to self-centered.
      Further, I think she has a serious hidden agenda.
      However, what we have sitting in parliament right now is so bad, anything else would probably be better.

  7. She has absolutely no chance in the elections because she will need something called “votes” which are earned not through her pedigree of achievements but her pedigree of birth.
    The lady must learn from history that pedigree wins votes. It happened in Africa from the Mau Mau era in Kenya sixty years ago when the majority Kikiyu pedigree won the election, to the majority Shona pedigree in Zimbabawe and the majority Ovambo pedigree in Namibia.
    Those not learning this history include COPE of Xhosa pedigree in South Africa and Julius Malema of Pedi pedigree.
    Some may have noticed the steady government shuffle of people of Zulu and friends pedigree into prominent positions. And the revenge being meted out to Malema of Pedi pedigree who aggravated his position by calling a President of Zulu pedigree names.

  8. From a ‘poundless freedom fighter’ to a couple of well paid positions, how the hell do you come into R55million++ in what 25 working years? If she really wants to impress the masses into believing she will make an honest politician, she will have to explain how she amassed that wealth. We certainly don’t need any more ‘rich bitches’ getting their hands on money that should go to our poverty stricken masses.

    • OutofAfrica says:

      Yes really! It boggles the mind to understand how that much wealth was amassed in so short a time??

      • M D FRASER says:

        Could have been created magically out of thin air. perhaps that’s why she wears a hat like that of Liewe Heksie’s ouma :-)

  9. Never ever, ever trust a politician. They are liars. Is there really honour among thieves. I really doubt it.

  10. Mrs Mamphela is a type of a politician that we need. In realy democratic countries, if I can recall few like USA and Britain, you need to come clean to hold public office. She is an educated woman with poor background, fully equiped with socio-political dynamics of the South African environment. She is not hungry, setting her mind on government tenders and to appease friends. Mamphela is not Jesus and she never claim to be and she knows no political party leader can be compared to Him, but at least she is transperent compared.

    There is nothing that can be better than to what she did. She is not going to be concerned about building her casttle first at the expense of the poor people. She has a vision and goal to accomplish and that vision and goal depends to South Africans to make it to be a reality at the 2014 general elections. Polititical parties need to come clean and tell South Africans who are their sponsors?. Politicians need to be screened and those associated with criminal records be denied public office if we want to compete with developed countries.

    Come 2014, all we need is service delivery with knowlegeable leaders leading the cause. The ANC has done a wondersfull job and that history cannot be written off except hynes who want to spoil the good name. In this country we need a strong opposition party to keep the rulling party on toes and if possible takeover and AGANG seemed to feet the shoe. Come 2014, come and we salute Mrs Mamphela for declaring her assets public. Dont be destructed about political hyenass, they hold no power to judge and we will teach them a lesson at the 2014 general election. The South Africans want service delivery not political backgrounds and that history is fading away because it has created incompetent leaders that failed South Africans. Walk and walk the walk, 2014 general election and the red carpet is coming. And you will be the first women’s President in this country. Hala hala halaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa la AGANG

    • a-maize-ingly-corny says:

      “… except hynes who …”
      Amongst your other unique (Richard’s dictionary) words is one that I find completely new! What, on earth, are HYNES?

      • M D FRASER says:

        I think he means hyenas, but I’m not sure. Methinks he listens / watches too much SABC.
        Their English is abysmal. I see now ANN7 is even worse. Could be sponsored by SABC to make SABC look better. If you have not watched ANN7 on DStv 405 yet, you should do so, it’s a laugh a minute. Makes Monty Python look bland. :-)

  11. Richard, it is your typical blind belief, misinformed facts, wishful thinking and the ongoing ANC ‘bantu style education’ that got the ruling party such powers, to mess up South Africa’s image, wealth and good name across the globe. Jesus will forgive you and you kind, for you know not what you do!

  12. lk what is your point?

  13. Please read what I wrote about pedigree (actually “tribalism” is a better word but elicits howls of protest from everyone with their head in the sand, denying its existence). She can be Mother Theresa, but without votes she can do nothing. And with a minority Sotho name she’s not going to get enough votes to get into any position to implement any of her grandiose policies, even though they are commendable .

  14. Lesego Makgothi says:

    It looks like its a competition to play with poor South African’s minds. Who would trust a woman who does not know a simple arithmetic? A president to be! And clearly underestimate her net earning by R445M? I think she is also cheating tax like Juju. If she can declare R55M as her net worth, yet she has she has far more than that, what would prevent her from under declaring her tax returns to SARS? – South African politics is gradually turning to circus! Not long ago, she was a JZ’s bosom buddy! Noooo I don’t trust her, and I don’t think she will make it.

    • a-maize-ingly-corny says:

      “… gradually turning to circus!”
      What do you mean “gradually” and “turnING”
      SA politics is ALREADY a circus and the change was RAPID – not gradual.

      She may, at one time, have been ‘bosom buddies’ with Thabo and the rest of his intellectual family, being a prof, at UCT, before becoming MD of the World Bank – ‘bosom buddy’ with ‘shower-head’ – that I cannot see!

      IF MmeRamphele IS cheating SARS it will just prove that even the smartest can learn something from the dumbest – even if it ISN’T woodwork!

    • Lesego Makgothi would you trust a man who does not know a simple arithmetic, such as Jacob Zuma? He can’t declare his wealth publicly because the zillions can only dazzle his eyes and his mind.

  15. RATAVA…… if you don’t get my point, this country is in a bigger mess than one can imagine!

  16. Ouma007, even if she has R500 million and let us say that, out of our 50 million plus population, 25 million are destitute, distributing her entire wealth to those indigent souls would mean that they would each benefit by R100. Not much help especially since they would all need to give a few rands or even cents back to her to prevent her from starving.

    • a-maize-ingly-corny says:

      Tony, refer to your comment to Lesego Makgothi asking if one can “… trust a man who does not know a simple arithmetic …” then look again at your comment to Ouma007 – R500 million divided by 25 million people is TWO hundred Rands each and not 100.
      Does this lack of simple arithmetic mean we cannot trust you?
      Probably not.
      Anyone can make a mistake, can’t they?
      To err is human …

  17. Lesego Makgothi says:

    Well Induna Shower Head will never declare his assets. Once he does that, it will be a cold day in hell and time will stand still. So; don’t even think about it. If there are people who trust him and believe in him. They deserve a Noble Peace Prize! Would anybody trust the man and his gang who have sustained a very and frail old man with life support to buy him time for up coming elections? No way.
    Tony, you were mearely making calculations, no need to sweat. If you were an accountant, we will call that error of entry. When weighing the merits, making error on calculations and making error on declaring which one is worse? a-maize-ingly-corny I think you are being hush on Tony!

    • a-maize-ingly-corny says:

      “hush” – do you, perhaps mean HARSH ? I think not – my last four lines are the softening of judgment.

  18. Lesego Makgothi says:

    Opps! I meant harsh! I get now!

  19. My apologies to all that saw my error.
    Maths is a favourite subject of mine, it was the variable possibilities that I was choosing as an example that resulted in my negligent editing.
    The basic challenge of the worth of such distribution was the point that I was trying to make.

  20. Stephen Sihlangu says:

    Doctor Mamphela is a coward because she’d attacked leaders of the ANC even when ANC is doing well. Agang has nothing to offer South Africans but their are just there to add a number to the ballot box. No one is bigger than the ANC even Zuma or Mandela, so who the hell is that hypocryte Mamphela.

  21. S.S. Please come out from under the ANC rock that you have been blindly day dreaming under. There is absolutely no “ANC doing well” Ask most of the honest, intelligent black ex ANC supporters to confirm.
    No one is bigger, fatter, richer, greedier, more dishonest, thieving, fraudulent and uncaring than the ANC cronies!!

  22. Stephen Sihlangu, cowards are too scared to attack anybody. Bullies on the other hand attack anybody weaker than themselves because they ensure that they have accomplices (who are themselves scared of the bully) to ensure that everybody fears them.
    Zuma appoints criminals to head the prosecuting authority, other policing structures and the judiciary so that they can protect him from prosecution once he is no longer the president. He is much more a coward (and a bully) than Mamphela Ramphele could ever be.
    Ramphele is actually very brave to attack the criminal ANC who win elections by bribery, who don’t care what the citizens want but are determined to introduce e-tolls because they are going to earn billions at the expense of motorists and even the destitute will have to pay higher prices because the e-tolling will make everything more expensive. The ANC appoints politically connected people as cadres to positions in government that they can only destroy through their incompetence. Tenders are awarded to the highest bidder who is also incompetent so does not complete the job or does it very badly.
    If you are not a taxpayer the waste won’t bother you. If you are you should be ashamed of yourself for supporting a government that helps itself but does almost nothing for the country

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