One of SA's former Presidents who is being sued for divorce has hit back, saying he is not wealthy and lives off his pension. He stops just short of calling his wife a gold-digger who is living beyond her means, notes a Sunday Times report.

In a recent court application the former first lady called on her estranged husband to ‘come clean’ about his financial affairs.

She is claiming R170 000 a month in spousal maintenance ahead of the divorce being finalised and, once it is, R150 000 a month for herself.

She claims that apart from his R3m a year pension as a former President, he also has hidden business interests and support from influential people in neighbouring countries.

But he denies this.

While she did not identify the ‘influential people’, the former President refers in his answering papers to ‘defamatory’ allegations made by the woman during previous proceedings in the Maintenance Court. These included:

* That he received money from the late Muammar Gaddafi.

* That he returned from a trip to Eswatini with $1m (about R15.2m at this week's rate) in cash.

* That he has sources of income other than his state pension.

* That he has secret funds hidden at his home and other places.

* That he asked her to keep certain secrets, and that he has engaged in illegal conduct that he wants to keep hidden.

A letter from his attorney to hers in the court papers states that he ‘objects strenuously and disputes as false and defamatory her mischievous claims’.

‘If she persists she will be called upon to provide evidence, failing which she will face the full consequences of her irresponsible actions,’ the letter reads.

Full Sunday Times report (subscription needed)