Limpopo duo in hot water

Top Limpopo ANC officials, including deputy provincial chairperson Florence Radzilani and treasurer Danny Msiza, will be summoned to appear before the ANC’s integrity commission, said its chairperson, George Mashamba.

READ MORE: Vhembe mayor seeking legal advice on municipality’s dealings with VBS

He confirmed on Wednesday that the leaders would be called to explain their involvement in the “great bank heist” involving the VBS Mutual Bank. Mashamba said some councillors implicated in the scandal would also appear before the commission. This week integrity commissioners met to go through a 148-page report released by the South African Reserve Bank and decided to call all those implicated to account. “We have the analysis of the document by the Reserve Bank and a report from the PEC [provincial executive committee] of Limpopo,” Mashamba said. “We need more information to be able to deal with this comprehensively.

“After that we will come to a determination and report accordingly to the NEC [national executive committee] or, depending what our determination is, refer it to the disciplinary committee of the ANC.”

Mashamba said the process of collecting further information would uncover the identities of unnamed councillors implicated in the report. “We are going to call those who are implicated, including councillors in municipalities who were not mentioned by name. We don’t know how we will identify them, but this thing is still going to unravel so we will get more information as it unravels,” he said.

Limpopo municipalities reportedly invested R1.1-billion in VBS in what the Limpopo PEC described as a dereliction of duty.

The Vhembe municipality, where Radzilani is the mayor, is said to have injected the biggest amount — R300‑million — into VBS.

In the report compiled by advocate Terry Motau and law firm Werksmans, Radzilani is alleged to have requested kickbacks in exchange for keeping municipal deposits with VBS. The report also implicates Msiza for playing a role in orchestrating the illegal deposits made with the bank.

Radzilani has said she will seek a legal opinion on the findings made against her, and Msiza has demanded a retraction of the report’s findings against him.

But the Limpopo PEC said this week it wanted to see action against any members found on the wrong side of the law. “The ANC in Limpopo is irritated that our province lost over R1.1-billion due to incompetence and dereliction of duty by both our councils and officials bestowed with the responsibility to manage the bank and those managing municipal finances. The PEC places it on record that it will not tolerate criminal and unethical behaviour from our ranks irrespective of the leadership positions such members may occupy in the ANC,” the PEC said.

READ MORE: ANC: Heads must roll over ‘alarming’ VBS Mutual Bank report

Mashamba said, if the allegations against the party leaders were true, their behaviour would be an act of bringing the ANC into disrepute.

“[The integrity commission will look at] whether they [the allegations] are true or not. Because, if they are true, then they obviously bring the ANC into disrepute.

“Give us a week or two because we must get the additional documents and … notify the people that we want to appear before us,” Mashamba said. “If that thing is true it’s really not on. I don’t think anybody would reach a different conclusion.”

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Dineo Bendile
Dineo Bendile works from Johannesburg. Political reporter. BLACK. Dineo Bendile has over 2712 followers on Twitter.
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