EDITORIAL: Cry, the gullible country
The willingness of some to entertain Tokyo Sexwale’s wild claims highlights a sinister development in SA society
The latest plot twist in the national soap opera comes from business mogul, former Gauteng premier, one-time presidential hopeful and apparent scam victim Tokyo Sexwale. The Mvelaphanda Group founder shocked the nation recently when he said in a television interview that trillions of rand had been stolen from a mysterious heritage fund set up by a foreign “powerful family” that had appointed him as joint mandate holder. The money was to be used to fund infrastructure projects and free education, Sexwale maintained, but was instead looted by unnamed forces, apparently operating from inside the Reserve Bank.
Finance minister Tito Mboweni was quick to dismiss Sexwale’s claims, saying he’d been scammed. The National Treasury and Reserve Bank issued a joint statement saying there was no record of any such fund and Sexwale’s claims had several similarities to a global scam that often invoked the “White Spiritual Boy Trust”. The scam also sometimes mentioned a “Spiritual Wonder Boy ...