Klerksdorp Record - Former Dr Kenneth Kaunda Municipality Manager, Adv Mhlupeki Abbey Dlavane (55), Lebohang Onica Bogatsu (59), Elijah Mahlangu (57), Sello Motsiri (56) and Victor Nicodemus (46) appeared in the Klerksdorp Regional Court earlier today on charges of fraud and corruption.
The Hawks’ Serious Commercial Investigation alleges that Dlavane worked in cahoots with the four co-accused who were employees of the municipality at the time, to defraud the District Municipality through various unlawful transactions to the tune of over R2-million for services that were never rendered.
It is alleged that the transactions took place during 2010, and one of them totalling R550 000 was allegedly disbursed to Kumekucha Investments, a company which was not listed on the suppliers database. Further investigation also revealed that Dlavane was a sole director of the said entity.
It is further alleged that the group arranged training for the Municipality employees through a bogus company. The said training never took place despite the fact that the municipality was billed for it. The same tactic was apparently employed with a different training entity but this time the Municipality was able to stop the payment beforehand after a whistle was blown to the group’s alleged illegal activities.
A further fraudulent attempt was made, where the Debtors’ Clerk allegedly conspired with the manager and authorised a payment of a substantial amount to a company, which had an arrangement with the municipality to accommodate students of a local College in Potchefstroom. The management of the Municipality was alerted to the fact that payment never reached the intended recipient which resulted in the cheque being intercepted and stopped.
All these cases were thoroughly investigated and submitted to the Directorate for Public Prosecution (DPP) for a decision which resulted in all five suspects being issued with summons on 6 May 2019 and their subsequent court appearance today. The case has been remanded to 11 September 2019 for the prosecutor to study the docket.
The National Head of the Directorate For Priority Crime Investigation, Lt Gen Godfrey Lebeya has welcomed the developments in this case.
“While the matter has taken longer than expected, I appreciate the fact that the accused have now been secured before court. Those who continue to defraud municipalities must be rest assured that they will soon have their day in court,” he said.