Malema addresses Motsepe’s Botswana lawsuit
Publish date: 10 June 2019
Issue Number: 827
Diary: IBA Legalbrief Africa
EFF leader Julius Malema has entered the fray between the Motsepe family and Botswana’s Sunday Standard which is facing threats of a multimillion-rand lawsuit over its media coverage. As previously reported in Legalbrief Today, billionaire businessman Patrice Motsepe has filed a lawsuit against the newspaper over claims that he smuggled R22m to influence succession politics in the country. Motsepe – founder and chairman of African Rainbow Minerals – is demanding 5m pula (R6.7m) in damages for injury to his reputation. This after the newspaper published an article headlined ‘New Jerusalem Vic Falls secret meeting scuttled’. In it, the paper claimed the Mamelodi Sundowns owner and his sister, businesswoman Bridgette Motsepe-Radebe, donated R22m to Dr Pelonomi Venson-Moitoi’s campaign ahead of the ruling Botswana Democratic Party’s elective conference held last month. A report on The Citizen site notes that Malema has suggested he believes there is a ‘plot to remove the current Botswana Government by some members of a powerful South African family’. In a tweet, he said he would speak about it at his Youth Day rally on Sunday. Malema was ejected from the ANC, along with other ANC Youth League members, in part for comments that were construed at the time as calling for regime change in Botswana. He was also slapped with restrictions to his ability to visit Botswana.