Court ordered us to freeze Zuma’s account, says FNB

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FNB says it was just follow the High Court order. Image: supplied.

First National Bank (FNB) disclosed that it was not acting independently when it froze the account of former South African president Jacob Zuma. Instead, the bank clarified that it was adhering to a court directive obtained by the liquidators of VBS Mutual Bank, seeking to recover owed funds from Zuma.

The bank told that the High Court (KZN Division) had mandated it to implement a hold on outgoing payments from Zuma’s accounts, although incoming transactions remain unaffected, as stated by FNB in a released statement. The bank emphasized its obligation to comply with legal orders and refrained from further commentary on individual client matters.

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The account that FNB has frozen is said to be the account where the R7.8-million loan Zuma took from VBS Mutual Bank was deposited into, which was intended to cover expenses related to his residence’s renovation at the Nkandla compound.

Pressure from liquidators

Allegations surfaced last week suggesting that Zuma faced legal pressure from the liquidators of VBS, represented by Anoosh Rooplal’s legal team, demanding repayment of at least R250,000 to prevent the attachment of his Nkandla compound.

Zuma’s tenure as president, spanning from 2009 to 2018, was marked by controversy, including scrutiny over the lavish renovations at his KwaZulu-Natal residence. The extensive refurbishments, featuring amenities such as a chicken coop and the ‘fire pool,’ drew widespread criticism and legal scrutiny.

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