There are things that the Russian state knows about your leaders that you, the ordinary South African, should know too — but don’t.

For example, in November the deputy president, David Mabuza, travelled to Russia for medical attention. This was his fourth trip for treatment in that country. What ails our dear leader, you may ask. He won’t tell you or me. Is there something embarrassing about the illness? If there is, then could it be that someone in Russia might threaten him with disclosure — and get state secrets out of him?

Mabuza did not start the Russia medical trend. Former president Jacob Zuma reportedly told an ANC national executive committee meeting that he had been poisoned three times and had received treatment in Russia. He told a meeting in Pongola, KwaZulu-Natal, in 2017 that he was poisoned for fighting for radical economic transformation.

BL Premium

This article is reserved for our subscribers.

A subscription helps you enjoy the best of our business content every day along with benefits such as exclusive Financial Times articles, Morningstar financial data, and digital access to the Sunday Times and Times Select.

Already subscribed? Simply sign in below.

Questions or problems? Email helpdesk@businesslive.co.za or call 0860 52 52 00.