City Press exclusive – Thuli blasts Juju’s tender

2012-09-22 19:14

Malema on the ropes as Public Protector, taxman and Hawks push embattled youth leader into a corner

Julius Malema made his millions from a fraudulent and possibly corrupt tender, says Public Protector Thuli Madonsela.

City Press has obtained a copy of ­Madonsela’s provisional report into the R52 million tender won by On-Point ­Engineers from the Limpopo roads and transport department.

Malema’s Ratanang Family Trust is one of two shareholders in On-Point.

Although Madonsela couldn’t find any evidence that Malema interfered in the tendering process, she found that his trust benefited “improperly” from the contract and that legal action should be taken to ­recover the money he received.

Her investigation also found that ­On-Point acted corruptly by signing back-to-back agreements with subcontractors.

“Due to the fact that the awarding of the contract to ­On-Point was based on ­deliberate misrepresentations and non-compliance with procurement prescripts, its shareholders, including the Ratanang Family Trust ... benefited improperly by means of the payment of ‘dividends’ and other payments made to it by On-Point,” the report reads.

Madonsela recommends that the tender be immediately cancelled; that the ­National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) and the Asset Forfeiture Unit urgently consider criminal action; and that the Master of the High Court investigate the flow of money into Malema’s trust.

Malema will appear in the Polokwane Regional Court on Wednesday to face criminal charges of fraud and money laundering relating to the On-Point tender.

City Press has learnt that his business partner and On-Point’s chief executive, Lesiba Gwangwa, will also appear in court, along with other Limpopo businessmen and government officials involved in the awarding of the tender.

Apart from Madonsela’s report and the criminal charges, Malema has a third ­battle to fight: a tax judgment of R16 million obtained against him by the SA ­Revenue Service (Sars) last week.

Sars is targeting Malema’s property and assets in Limpopo and Gauteng, including his half-built mansion in Sandton, a farm and smallholding in Limpopo, and a Polokwane house.

Sars spokesperson Adrian Lackay ­confirmed the judgment.

As state institutions were putting the boot in, Malema was crying foul, claiming that the sudden actions against him were politically motivated.

On Monday – four days before his arrest warrant was issued – Malema’s lawyer, Nicqui Galaktiou, warned the NPA and the Hawks in a letter not to be influenced politically when considering Malema’s matter.

“It has come to Mr Malema’s knowledge that there is a political plan to have him arrested and incarcerated within days ...

"Mr Malema is deeply concerned as to this information and, if true, provides stark evidence that there is a political agenda to have Mr Malema arrested and brought before a court on charges which are unsustainable,” she wrote.

These charges, according to Galaktiou, will be motivated by an “ulterior motive to silence him as a political opponent to other politicians and to interfere with or limit his constitutional rights, including his right of freedom of speech”.

City Press understands that Malema’s belief in a political conspiracy was fuelled by a high-level meeting of ministers that took place in Cape Town last week.

He apparently thinks that the purpose of the meeting was to devise a strategy to have him arrested and that this ­constituted political interference of the highest order.

It is expected that Malema’s legal team will make this argument when he appears in court this week.

City Press was given different versions of the same meeting, indicating the ­country’s security establishment was split on the Malema matter and whether there was political pressure on the NPA to charge him.

Yesterday Justice Minister Jeff Radebe, who chairs the justice, crime prevention and security cluster, said no individual cases were discussed.

“The purpose of the meeting was to ­discuss the situation that was prevailing in the mines in Marikana and what ­measures needed to be put in place to ­stabilise the situation.

“These are the same measures announced at the media briefing (on Friday). Allegations that individual cases or individuals were discussed are unfounded.

“The cluster would like to dismiss these mischievous allegations.

“The cluster would like to reaffirm the independence of the NPA, the SAPS and Sars as protected by the Constitution ... and other laws of our country. These institutions are established to ­conduct their work independently from the executive,” Radebe said.

Yesterday Malema declined to comment, saying he will respond in court. ­Cosatu’s Zwelinzima Vavi wrote on ­Twitter: “Malema is innocent until proven guilty – that is the principle we must ­respect.”

– Additional reporting by Carien du Plessis

Madonsela’s sanctions

» On-Point’s R52 million project management unit tender with Limpopo roads and transport department
be cancelled.

» Legal proceedings be instituted against On-Point and shareholders (including Malema’s trust) to recover improper financial benefits.

» On-Point and Lesiba Gwangwa be blacklisted by the Treasury.

» Double payments to On-Point be recovered.

» Disciplinary steps be instituted against members of the bid adjudication committees that awarded the tender to On-Point.

» The Engineering Council of SA investigate Gwangwa’s conduct.

» The Master of the High Court investigate the administration of the Malema and Gwangwa family trusts.

» The NPA and Asset Forfeiture Unit urgently consider taking criminal action.

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions. publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24


Rugby World Cup 2015

All the action from the 2015 RWC, including live coverage of all 48 matches, breaking news, fixtures, results, logs - and much more!


Rugby World Cup 2015

Habana believes in younger Boks
All Blacks ready for a 'hell of a battle'
Barnes to ref Boks, Wales clash
Brave Blossoms: 'Sport heroes of Japan'

Your incisive and innovative mind is on fire. You may be keen to explore new avenues that can help to inspire you. You more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.