I think GregF and others have said this already, but it bears saying again:
It is very likely that Robert hasn't said anything publically because he can't - legally.
It is also true that RF Australia are still operating and if the staff are friendly it is probably because -
1. They are always friendly,
2. They are as unaware of the situation as the rest of us.
As far as the jibe of snake oil is concerned, the fact that myself and so many others on this forum are so shocked with this news is because Robert is a stand-up guy and has always gone out of his way to help people, many times to his detriment.
The level of passion he has demonstrated over the years has been evident to many people, certainly to myself and I can only imagine how devastated he must be with the collapse(?) of the South African venture, no disrespect to the affected people with paid deposits.
I stress again that I have no affiliation to/with RF whatsoever, other than being in the final stages of building my car.
I haven't spoken to Robert for a while (6-7 weeks), but have been in contact with the factory in Melbourne regarding parts that I am waiting on. They cannot comment to me regarding what is going on due to legal reasons but they are still operating at some level, don't know what the extent of that is with respect to ordered cars and deposits.
I am happy to also contribute to the trust fund, knowing what my dream means to me - this makes me want to help those people achieve their dreams too, and so far there hasn't been a better suggestion. Another way to help the situation at RF is for those customers (if any) that have received goods from RF but have yet to pay for them, it may make all the difference if money owed to RF can make its way back to those customers that had deposits down - including myself as I still have to pay for some parts.
I am not privy (and wouldn't expect to be) with any of the negotiations or dealings going on behind the scenes, but I do recall Robert mentioning on the forum that he was spending 2 out of every 4 weeks in SA trying to set right some issues with production over there. I believe the details of the company structure in SA and some difficulties experienced were discussed here
. It is interesting to note that the manufacturing was not under Robert's control, so is there anything forethcoming from the other parties involved? I haven't dealt with those parties in SA so I don't know what their integrity is like, maybe someone on the forum can shed some light on the other players....
My apologies in advance if my ramblings have offended anyone, just trying to put some perspective on a horrible situation.