South Africa

Phala Phala: Ramaphosa’s security boss faces suspension over allegedly ‘secret’ investigation of 2020 burglary

The head of President Cyril Ramaphosa’s protection unit, Major General Wally Rhoode, is facing suspension amid an internal investigation into his conduct around a burglary at the president’s Phala Phala farm in February 2020.

Rhoode, a South African Police Service (SAPS) official, was appointed to head the Presidential Protection Service (PPS) in 2018 after he served as head of security for Ramaphosa’s CR17 campaign.

News24 has learnt that in mid-September, Rhoode was served with a notice of an internal investigation to determine the facts around the burglary and more importantly, Rhoode’s role and actions in the immediate aftermath.

Prior to the finalisation of the investigation, however, Rhoode has been asked to respond to three charges and provide reasons to explain why he should not be suspended.

News24 understands the three potential charges being weighed against Rhoode include allegations that:

  •   He supplied false information for the reason he undertook a trip to Namibia with Ramaphosa’s special advisor, Bejani Chauke, in June 2020;
  •   He gave an instruction for the PPS’ occurrence book (OB) to be removed from a central office of the unit, and
  •   He allegedly conducted his own investigation outside police processes.

News24 understands that he is yet to be served with a formal suspension notice. While the internal investigation is continuing, one source who has knowledge of the probe said Rhoode was yet to be interviewed.

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