Shady spook had meeting with Zuma
Publish date: 14 May 2018
Issue Number: 773
Diary: IBA Legalbrief Africa
Former President Jacob Zuma met murdered South African state security contract agent George Darmanovic at his official office in Pretoria when Zuma was still head of state, raising questions about whether the controversial operative was working for him, reveals a News24 report. It says Darmanovic, who was assassinated in Serbia on Sunday last week, has been described by sources as a serial information peddler. Zuma and Darmanovic, along with Frans Richards, who previously worked in South African intelligence circles, as well as a fourth man said to be linked to state security work but whose identity was not immediately apparent, were photographed in Zuma's office in 2012. Richards confirmed the authenticity of the photograph and reportedly told News24 ‘it was not a social meeting’. However, he did not divulge its details; and neither Zuma’s representatives nor the Presidency have responded to questions on the meeting. A highly placed source reportedly claimed Darmanovic had been viewed in intelligence circles as being part of a parallel intelligence unit. News24 says it has established that Darmanovic had for years, up until his murder, been distributing a wide range of information and claims – against top politicians and police officers – to several well-placed individuals in SA who were able to influence the news cycle.