Madibeng Local Municipality has learnt of a fake letter circulating on Social Media whose unfounded contents implicate Councillors and the Municipal Manager to have been involved and benefited from the investment of the VBS Mutual Bank.
Councillors whose names appear in the fake letter include the Executive Mayor, Cllr Jostina Mothibe, MMC Joseph Ratloi, MMC Douglas Maimane, MPAC Chairperson Cllr Emmanuel Diale, Cllr Tsheko Bogale, Cllr Motladi Modipane, Cllr Betty Muhlanga as well as the Municipal Manager, Mr Morris Maluleka.
The letter, which further falsely presents Cllr Douglas Maimane as the author, seeks to do nothing else but to create division amongst the political leadership of the institution and to as well harm the credibility and character of the Municipal Manager, Mr Morris Maluleka.
The municipality wishes to reiterate and state clearly that the contents of the letter are baseless and have malicious intentions written all over.
The real facts about the municipality’s VBS involvement is that it is indeed true that the municipality invested an amount of R50m with the VBS in December 2017.
An amount of R20m was deposited back to the municipality upon maturity of the investment and the bank committed to pay the remaining R30 million with interest of which they (the bank) never honoured.
The municipality later received communication from the curator that the bank was placed under administration.
The Minister of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs then summoned all Executive Mayors, Municipal Managers and Chief Financial Officers of Municipalities that had invested with the VBS where an announcement was made that municipalities may not get investments since there was a lot of fraud in the VBS Mutual Bank.
An internal report on the VBS investment was tabled before Council and the Municipal Manager was subsequently instructed to initiate an independent forensic investigation on the said investment.
Upon conclusion of the forensic investigation, the report was tabled at Council and implicated three officials and a Councillor.
Council again instructed the Municipal Manager to take necessary steps and open criminal cases against those involved.
The three officials implicated have since been suspended with disciplinary hearings already underway.
The Councillor concerned will face the Council’s Rules of Order and Ethics Committee regarding the findings.
The forensic investigation report has since been sent to the National Minister of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (COGTA), Office the Premier, the MEC for Local Government, the MEC for Finance.
The municipality urges any person who has any information about the VBS investment that might not be in the hands of the Council to contact the investigating Officer at the Brits Police Station.
It is also the view of the municipality that the investigation by the SAPS should also be afforded much space to be concluded without any interference through a spread of baseless information.
Madibeng Local Municipality