Ramaphosa scores R2.1 million for Ankole cow in cattle auction thanks to Motsepe

Business Insider SA

Ramaphosa's Ankole cow. Lot 15 also know as Morogoro (Business Insider)
Ramaphosa's Ankole cow. Lot 15 also called Morogoro (Business Insider / Phumi Ramalepe)

  • Cyril Ramaphosa made millions in his cattle auction in Bela-Bela, Limpopo this weekend, which included Ankole, Baron and Bonsmara studs. 
  • The President sold one female Ankole cow for R2.1 million – bought by his brother-in-law Patrice Motsepe.
  • Motsepe spent a total of R4.7 million on four Ankole female cows at the auction on Saturday.
  • For more stories go to

Cyril Ramaphosa, wearing a light pink shirt, black formal pants and clean black shoes, walked slowly into his Phala Phala Wildlife auction house in Limpopo on a hot but cloudy Saturday morning.  

The president, who’s also the biggest Ankole Farmer in the country, stopped along the passage to greet the few who approached him with smiles from ear-to-ear.

And with a big and polite grin on his face, he posed for the camera with some of the children in the auction house while their parents stood before the president, operating their phone cameras.  

In anticipation of a relaxed afternoon and a much-needed opportunity to let loose while wealthy farmers bid for his beloved cattle, nothing could wipe the grin off his face – except the mention of some media presence, which, according to one of the organisers, “he still had to think about dealing with.”  

President Cyril Ramaphosa walking up to the stage
President Cyril Ramaphosa walking up to the stage (Business Insider / Phumi Ramalepe)

Before making his way to his seat, the President had a few chats with those in attendance, among them his brother-in-law and executive chairperson of African Rainbow Minerals Patrice Motsepe. The man who would be responsible for a record-breaking bid.

Patrice Motsepe in a powder plue suite (Business I
Patrice Motsepe in a powder blue suite (Business Insider / Phumi Ramalepe)

Thanks to breath-taking sums of money put on the table, Ramaphosa scored over R10 million for his Ntaba Nyoni Ankole, Baron and Bonsmara cattle.  

Lot 9 Baron (Business Insider Phumi Ramalepe).
Lot 9 Baron (Business Insider/ Phumi Ramalepe).

In the Ankole category, the star of the show was Fafa. A young pregnant heifer with iconic horn shapes that stretch up to 32 inches.

The three-years and a half female cow sold for R2.1 million thanks to Motsepe. The mining billionaire spent almost R5 million on four female Ankole cattle.

Fafa (SwiftVee)
Fafa (SwiftVee)
 Another Ankole female called Cindarella, sold for R900,000. The two-years and 11-month old female is two months pregnant and has horns 27.16 inches long.  

“Cinderella is not only beautiful. She looks Royal, she is sired by the most majestic Ankole bull... ‘Tsinakaho’. Cinderella's inherited colours set her apart from all the mottled heifers in the country,” according to Ntaba Nyoni Cattle.  

Cindarella (SiftVee)
Cindarella (SiftVee)

Zaria, a three-years and a half female also sold for R900,000 as well. The daughter of Diambo – one of Ramaphosa’s revered Ankole bull – is described to have “good mothering abilities” and horns as long as 30.7 inches. 

Zaria (SwiftVee)
Zaria (SwiftVee)

The Baron cattle generated hundreds of thousands of rands as well, with a 3-month pregnant female in Lot 5 having sold for R400,000, and another female Baron, who’s 2-months pregnant with a heifer calf, having sold for R280,000.  

Baron Lot 16
Baron Lot 16 (SwiftVee)
Baron heifer with calf (Business Insider Phumi Ram
Baron heifer with calf (Business Insider Phumi Ramalepe)

Ramaphosa ventured into Ankole farming in 2004 after traveling to Uganda to meet with President Yoweri Museveni. The cattle, well known for its regal appearance and long horns, has meat high in polyunsaturated fats and omega oils and produces rich milk.   

During last year’s auction, the president’s Ankole cattle sold for a total of R2.7 million, with one the best bull selling for R700,000.  

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