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Former SA President’s wife wants divorce, says he hides wealth

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  • She also needs to replace a luxury vehicle that was repossessed by a bank in July last year because she could no longer afford the instalments.

Wow, who could it be?

We’re going to have to ponder long and hard here to figure out which former South African president is being sued by his soon-to-be ex-wife, who filed papers in the high court last week.

A Constitutional Court ruling forbids naming the parties, for those wondering why it’s necessary to keep up this charade.

In the papers, reports TimesLIVE, the woman says the former president “must come clean about his “secretive” financial affairs, financial support from influential people in neighbouring countries and about his assets, most of which are not in his name”.

The woman is seeking a divorce, and wants the former president to fully disclose his finances, which could make things pretty awkward for a man who wants the country to believe he’s currently eking out a miserly existence:

She believes his salary “for life” is about R3m a year.

“He is also exceptionally wealthy in his own right. Most of his assets, which are beneficially owned, are not registered in his own name.”

She says these assets include a hotel in Eshowe, a shareholding in an Mpumalanga bus company, Buscor, and interests in companies and close corporations in which his interests are “masked”.

The wife says she has personal knowledge that her husband has financial support and backing of influential individuals in neighbouring states “and if called upon by the court I will be in a position to back this”.

Maybe she found a bag of cash labelled ‘Gaddafi’ tucked away in a dark corner?

As the kids say these days, ‘spill the tea, sis’.

The former first lady and the president have been married for 28 years, and she says that in recent times she has been subjected to “emotional and psychological” suffering at his hands. For legal aid in such cases one can contact family law lawyers serving Southfield, Michigan.

She has the receipts, and now she wants to be looked after:

In terms of rule 43 on interim maintenance, she wants R170,000 a month for herself and the [two minor] children, and medical and educational expenses, along with an initial contribution of R50,000 to her legal fees.

As a former first lady, she still has some state-funded benefits, including bodyguards and drivers, and free medical care from the department of defence.

But while her home is owned by her family trust and she does not pay rent, she has to pay for all expenses, for three domestic workers, an au pair, a personal assistant and a tutor. She also needs to replace a luxury vehicle that was repossessed by a bank in July last year because she could no longer afford the instalments.

Sure sounds like times are tough.

Imagine the shame of having to downgrade from three domestic workers to two, or being driven around in a vehicle that doesn’t qualify as ‘luxury’?

Just the sorts of struggles that everyday South Africans can completely relate to. ■

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