The Minister of Internal Affairs of South Africa claims to have been blackmailed for sex videos


JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) – South Africa's home affairs minister, Malusi Gigaba, said on Sunday he faced threats of blackmail for a private sex video that was leaked after his phone was hacked when he was finance minister.

PHOTO PHOTOS: Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba delivers his budget speech in Cape Town, South Africa, 21 February 2018. REUTERS / Mike Hutchings

Gigaba, who was finance minister between March 2017 and February 2018, said he had decided to announce because he had learned that the video was now circulating in political circles.

"My wife and I have learned, with regret and sadness, that a video containing material of a sexual nature, intended only for our eyes, which was stolen when my communication was illegally intercepted / my phone was hacked, in 2016 / 17, is circulating among some political figures, "Gigaba said on Twitter.

"This video was at the center of a series of attempts at extortion and blackmail, dating back to the period immediately following my appointment as Minister of Finance, on March 31, 2017, which I firmly refused to entertain," he told his official Twitter account.

Gigaba was placed in the role of finance minister, after President Jacob Zuma fired Pravin Gordhan, a move that at that time has unnerved investors and troubled markets.

Gigaba spokesman Vuyo Mkhize said the anonymous parties initially required cash payments and when the minister rejected those requests, the parties asked him "if he could consider paying through the issuance of contracts". He said that the minister has rejected categorically.

He said that the state companies mentioned in relation to the contracts were South African Airways (SAA), the Public Investment Corporation that manages the pensions of civil servants and the Southern Africa Development Bank.

Mkhize said that Gigaba had brought the matter to the inspector general because "he had been presented with evidence that his computer had been subjected to surveillance by state security agencies".

Gigaba, who in February was renamed as Minister of Internal Affairs, a position he previously held, said today that order forces and intelligence agencies are investigating the matter.

Police officers at the office of the national commissioner and the investigative unit of the élite Hawks were not immediately reached for comment.

Gordhan, Gigaba's predecessor to the Treasury and now Minister of Public Enterprises, said today that efforts to clean up endemic corruption in state-owned companies (SOC) have endured "dangerous" resistance that has threatened South Africa's sovereignty.

Reporting by Ed Stoddard; Editing by Elaine Hardcastle and Susan Fenton

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