Former South African President , Jacob Zuma , on Tuesday denied hiding some $ 30m belonging to the late Libyan leader, Moamer Gaddafi, in his mansion .
“ Sigh! I owe millions in legal fees …
I now hear that I have been keeping money belonging to my late brother Gaddafi, ’’ tweeted Zuma , who is embroiled in numerous corruption scandals .
Over the weekend , South Africa ’ s Sunday Times newspaper had published an investigation that said Libyan military authorities have asked President Cyril Ramaphosa to help recover late Muammar Gaddafi’ s millions – now believed to be in eSwatini , formerly Swaziland .
“Where’ s this money , because His Majesty knows nothing about it ?’’
Zuma tweeted , referring to the Swazi king , who the Times said had recently confirmed the existence of the money to Ramaphosa.
Before he was deposed and killed in 2011, the Libyan leader had a strong relationship with South Africa and Zuma had offered his “ brother” a safe haven , according to the Times .
Gaddafi, instead, asked him to safeguard about $ 30 m to be used for lawyer fees should he be taken to the International Criminal Court , the Times reported .
After keeping the money at his luxurious rural home of Nklanda – itself a source of Zuma ’ s myriad troubles after he used public money to pay for its upgrades – Zuma then gave it to King Mswati of eSwatini to look after , the paper alleges .
However , South Africa ’ s International Relations Minister , Lindiwe Sisulu , has rubbished the Times story.
“ This is a story that has been circulating for many, many years, that the Libyans had brought their money here, ’’ she told reporters this week .
“ There is no money in Swaziland , there is no money that we’ re aware of , ’’ Sisulu added .