peace builder?

South Africa’s Ivor Ichikowitz: A ‘philanthropic’ arms dealer?

in depth

This article is part of the dossier:

Africa’s barons of arm sales

By Vincent Duhem

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Posted on May 19, 2022 14:14

Close to the ANC, South African businessman Ivor Ichikowitz, who founded the Paramount group in 1994, has extended his networks to the rest of the continent as he presents himself as a defender of just causes.

This is part 3 of a 4-part series

The three men who land in Bangui on 22 March 2013 are full of hope. Employees of a large group specialising in the arms and security business have been approached by the entourage of François Bozizé, president of the Central African Republic (CAR). It is a time of suspicion and wild rumours in the capital city.

On 10 December 2012, a motley coalition of rebel groups from the north had launched an offensive with the aim of overthrowing Bozizé’s regime, before an agreement signed in Libreville, Gabon on January 11 halted their advance.

Since then, the rebels have been camped out in the town of Sibut, north of the capital; and they’re still a menace. The head of state thinks he can take advantage of the truce to strengthen his position. It is precisely for this purpose that our three men are in Bangui. The “shopping list” envisaged by Bozizé’s entourage

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