Fact checking Malema on spy tapes and Tiso Blackstar

The registered owner of the Hill on Empire, according to Office Space Online, is Pivotal Group.

Pivotal Group’s parent company is Redefine Properties.The biggest shareholder of Redefine Properties is in fact the PIC, according to Market Screener.

Why does all of this matter though? Well this last week Julius Malema proclaimed that the inquiry into state capture shouldn’t be held in a building owned by Tiso Blackstar.

That building is the Hill on Empire, which I have just pointed out isn’t actually owned by Tiso Blackstar. You can see Tiso Blackstar’s major shareholders on Market Screener too – and I’m not seeing a lot in common with Redefine Properties.

It is a minor nitpick, but it was one of the things that leaped out at me in his speech, the reason being I used to work there and there were issues around parking which wouldn’t have come up if they actually owned the building.

Another thing that leaped out at me is how he claimed that the SARS rogue unit was the source of the Zuma spy tapes.

Here’s the thing, the spy tapes were actually recorded by – the National Intelligence Agency. Here’s an IOL report from way back in 2014 saying as much.

My Take

Out of the two real facts Malema laid out in his speech here, both were wrong in a way that could be pretty easily publicly verified to be wrong.

He then went on to talk about the fruit of the rotten tree and how Gordhan is a member of the ANC, so if the ANC is corrupt why should we think he’s clean?

Malema seems to have forgotten that he got his political start from the ANC, and was only kicked out after he tried to start  a war with Botswana. His logic applies to himself, particularly given the ANC Youth League’s role in the tender scandals that marked Zuma’s first term in office.

If you want somebody who left the ANC because he couldn’t abide its corruption, that’s Mosiuoa Lekota, Malema didn’t leave the ANC, he was thrown out because he was a dangerous nutjob.

Anyway leaving that aside, Gordhan was in the position of Finance Minister from 2009 to 2014, and returned to the job at the end of 2015 and served until 2017.

According to Statista – in 2009 unemployment was at 23.54%, by 2017 it had risen to 27.72%.

My point being if you want to criticise Gordhan, you don’t have to rely on insinuation to do it. That degree of unemployment is not healthy.

The funny thing is with the media, you can’t just write that someone is corrupt just because the organisation they belong to has been corrupted, you have to have some kind of evidence to that effect.

I’m not saying Gordhan is clean, I’m saying you need more than just that he’s an ANC member to say he’s dirty.

The same company that Malema claims is defending Gordhan, was the company that ran the now discredited Sars Rogue Unit story. When it thought it had the least bit of evidence, it went after Gordhan and it lost a lot of credibility when it turned out to be bogus.

That lack of credibility is what Malema is exploiting here, but it doesn’t work because that credibility was lost because they unfairly attacked the guy Malema says they’re defending. He wants it both ways, they’re untrustworthy because they’re Gordhan’s enemies, and they’re untrustworthy because they’re his friends.

And that tells us something about his other accusations about journalists defending Gordhan – Malema says whatever is convenient to Malema and who cares if its true or not.

The EFF have been implicated in a lot of corruption scandals lately, and those scandals have hurt them quite badly, particularly in the case of VBS.

Journalists must be the enemy, because how else would you know what Malema is up to?


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