There are calls for South Africa to closely scrutinise investments from Saudi Arabia amid the growing outcry over the death of dissident Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi.
Saudi authorities said over the weekend that the journalist was killed at its consulate in Istanbul during what it calls “a fist fight.”
Khashoggi was last seen entering the consulate on 2 October to obtain documents for his forthcoming marriage.
Earlier this year President Cyril Ramaphosa secured a minimum investment commitment of $10 billion from the Saudi Arabian government directed at energy and power creation.
Senior researcher at the Afro-Middle East Centre Ebrahim Deen said: “We need to be very wary of Saudi investments and what the purpose of these investments are. These investments, the $10 billion, is actually hamstringing the ability of Dirco (Department of International Relations and Cooperation) to move, to manoeuvre.”
In the wake of Khashoggi’s suspicious disappearance, many foreign officials and dignitaries have pulled out of Saudi Arabia’s investment conference dubbed “Davos in the desert”.