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Minister to challenge Kasrils's defamation case over Zuma rape claim

Kebby Maphatsoe says he’s instructed his lawyers to deal with the matter.

FILE: Deputy Defence Minister Kebby Maophatsoe. Picture: Sapa.

JOHANNESBURG -Deputy Minister of Defence and Military Veterans, Kebby Maphatsoe is consulting his lawyers after receiving legal papers from former intelligence minister Ronnie Kasrils, suing him for defamation.

Kasrils has filed summons in the High Court to the tune of R1 million against Maphatsoe for false and derogatory statements he allegedly made in 2014.

Kasrils says Maphatsoe accused him of instructing a woman to lay rape charges against President Jacob Zuma in 2005.

Zuma claimed during his rape trial in 2006 he was the victim of a political plot.

Maphatsoe says the case will be challenged in court.

"We think Kasrils doesn't have the facts. He just wants to be popular because he's no longer popular."

Kasrils last year said Maphatsoe was the only government official making wild statements.

"This is so sinister, it's so sick. It undermines the values that we fought for in our liberation struggle and it's a great threat to our democracy.

Maphatsoe, who also chairs the Umkhonto We Sizwe Military Veterans Association, came under fire last year after accusing Public Protector Thuli Madonsela of being a CIA spy deployed to destabilise the African National Congress and ultimately the country.

Maphatsoe eventually apologised for his statements despite saying in Parliament that he had been misquoted and denying making the original CIA claim.