The African National Congress (ANC) claims that South Africa’s engagement in naval military exercises with Russia in December last year was nothing sinister.
This follows the US ambassador to South Africa Reuben Brigety’s allegation that South Africa supplied weapons to Russia to use in the war against Ukraine.
The Presidency has since disputed the claims saying it has no knowledge of weapons being loaded onto a Russian ship and that if this had happened it could have been illegal.
The ANC Secretary-General Fikile Mbalula says, “The United States of America in terms of governance has good relations with the ANC government and the people of SA from a point of trade relations. There are clashes which we have at a party level with the USA in terms of ideology.”
Mbalula adds, “We are very clear with regard to Russia and Ukraine situation, we are non-partisan, and nobody is going to move us from that. The accusations that our government is giving arms and so on because of the drills that have taken place which are normal. There are no arms that have gone that side; and to the extent, if such has happened there is a commission of enquiry that will be established by the President.”
The International Relations Department has confirmed that the US ambassador to South Africa has apologised for his public statement. The comments have stimulated robust public debate.
US ambassador to SA apologises for making pubic statement over Russia allegations: Dirco