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Damning Allegations Levelled against British American Tobacco South Africa

The National Council Against Smoking wants the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (the Hawks) and the Special Investigating Unit to probe Batsa for allegedly bribing the late former Zimbabwean president Robert Mugabe with between $300 000 and $500 000 to secure the release of three directors of a security company implicated in robbery conspiracies. The council said it had sourced the bribery allegations from a BBC current affairs programme. Its views were echoed by the Fair-trade Independent Tobacco Association, which, through its chairperson Sinenhlanhla Mnguni, claimed that private investigators were planting surveillance equipment inside the homes of the association’s members, as well as “setting up of an illegal spy network in neighbouring Zimbabwe”. In a statement this week, Mnguni also alleged that Batsa colluded with state representatives in South Africa in its supposed spying, while committing alleged money-laundering to pay the “spies”.