The police and army intelligence service are investigating the alleged infiltration of the South African National Defense Force and “one or two” plans to assassinate President Cyril Ramaphosa.
This is according to Rapport, which reported that the investigation was launched a few weeks ago.
However, it was accelerated after a “ghost soldier” was arrested for trying to join the infantry group for Ramaphosa’s inauguration with three magazines in his pocket.
While it is understood this ghost soldier is not directly linked to the investigation into a potential assassination of the president, it points to weaknesses in the army.
The investigation is looking at the infiltration of the SANDF and whether there was a conspiracy to target high-profile politicians, including Ramaphosa.
How Ramaphosa ‘dodged a coup’
The City Press reported last year that “South Africa narrowly averted a mutiny by soldiers loyal to former president Jacob Zuma on the eve of his forced resignation in February 2018”.
According to the report, former members of the ANC’s Umkhonto weSizwe who were now in the SANDF were talking about a revolt.
Zuma was very popular among his former Umkhonto weSizwe comrades and this was exploited to “mobilise sympathy among the forces”.
Senior army leaders downplayed the threat, saying the top brass at the military is above petty party politics and would not have tolerated a revolt.