How Pule Mabe spent welfare millions

2014-05-25 12:30

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Newly sworn-in ANC MP Pule Mabe shelled out welfare money to political allies and used it to repay his credit card debt.

A forensic report compiled by investigators working for the Anti-Corruption Task Team and the Special Investigating Unit reveals how Mabe, his business partner and associates spent money from the social responsibility fund of the SA Social Security Agency (Sassa).

Chunks of the R2.2?million were spent on luxuries like clothing at high-end boutiques and home-theatre equipment, as well as everyday items such as groceries at Checkers and hardware supplies at Builders Warehouse.

The forensic report, a copy of which City Press has ­exclusively obtained, forms the foundation of the state’s case against Mabe, his business partner Surprise Ramosa and former Sassa spokesperson Paseka Letsatsi.

The three have yet to plead to the charges, which include fraud, theft and money laundering.

In an email, Mabe, who was 53rd on the ANC’s national list, declined to comment on the merits of the case, but said he was “encouraged by the resolve of our movement, the ANC”, which believed, like the Constitution, that individuals are innocent until proven guilty.

Victor Nkhwashu, Mabe and Ramosa’s attorney, said: “As you are aware, the matter is sub judice and therefore our ­version can only be disclosed to the court. Our clients remain innocent until the legal process is concluded.”

Contacted on Wednesday, Letsatsi’s lawyer, Zola Majavu, failed to comment on the contents of the forensic report.

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