Former president Jacob Zuma.

CHARLES MOLELE

A RILED UP finance minister Tito Mboweni took to Twitter on Monday night and accused Jacob Zuma of exaggerating his struggle credentials, saying that ANC veteran and former intelligence minister Joe Nhlanhla was the party’s Chief of Intelligence, and not the former president as he often claimed.

Mboweni, in a series of explosive tweets, challenged Zuma to come out in the open and prove his unsubstantiated, baseless claims that he was once the Head of ANC’s Intelligence Department.

“Someone in the ANC might help about this for historical reasons. Was Joe Nhlanhla not Head of Security and Intelligence in the ANC? That is my recollection from the PMC structure! But I was junior then,” said Mboweni.

Mboweni also tweeted: “He has, over the years, over-exaggerated his role in intelligence! We have known each other over many years. I think that he has now crossed the LINE!”

Mboweni also challenged Zuma to release his personal memoir and set the record straight, including his oft quoted remarks that he would expose Stratcom double agents who infiltrated the liberation movement in exile. 

During the state capture inquiry last year, Zuma alleged that former SANDF Chief Nyanda took instructions from the apartheid police.

He also accused Ngoako Ramatlhodi, the former minister of public service and administration, of being a spy, saying he was recruited when he was a student in Lesotho.

“Publish the book! Let’s read it and challenge it!! He has being proclaiming for years that he is writing a reveal all book. Where is it? Figment of imagination!! Publish the book! Let’s read it and challenge it!” he said.

Mboweni also called on Zuma to stop ruling from the grave and afford his successor some breathing space.  

Zuma, who is facing trial for corruption, lashed out at President Cyril Ramaphosa last Friday, accusing him of betraying the ANC with his stance against corruption related to COVID-19 procurement.

“And this thing of some amongst us retired ones wanting to dictate from the grave is wrong! Particularly those who were party of nine years of destruction!! And they claim to have Intelligence Files! Rubbish!,” Mboweni said.

“These relentless attacks on our organization must stop. And ANC leaders must not feed the frenzy! Order Comrades! We must UNITE and call young comrades like @mzwandileMasina to order! Stop Fire!! Unite!”

According to government records, Zuma left South Africa in 1975 and for the next 12 years was based in Southern Africa, first in Swaziland and then Mozambique.

During this period he was involved in underground work with former President Thabo Mbeki and others, giving leadership to ANC structures operating inside South Africa.

He also dealt with the thousands of young exiles that poured out of South Africa in the wake of the Soweto uprising in June 1976.

He became a member of the ANC National Executive Committee (NEC) in 1977.

By the end of the 1980s he was head of the ANC Intelligence Department, according to these records.

Duduzane Zuma, in defence of his father, took a swipe at Mboweni, saying: “The old man must sleep now [referring to Mboweni]. He is singing for supper. In fact he should just retire. We know already that his job is on the line. He is a minister that does not control his department. He is a stooge that is only singing for super.”

(COMPILED BY INSIDE POLITICS STAFF)

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