Mayor in taxi-for-tender row

2011-05-07 18:51

The wife of a prominent Limpopo mayor received a brand new minibus taxi worth almost R300 000 from a company that was awarded a multimillion-rand tender by her husband’s municipality.

Capricorn district municipality mayor, Lawrence Mapoulo, and his wife Dedenkie are embroiled in a taxi-for-tender row after businessman Malope Mogashoa bought Dedenkie a Toyota Quantum minibus.

The minibus was registered in the name of Valobex 93, a close corporation of which Dedenkie Mapoulo is the only member, as at February 11.

Three months earlier, Mogashoa’s Malo-Thabi Civil Construction (Pty) Ltd was awarded a R6-million tender for sewerage-pipe installation by the Capricorn municipality.

Lawrence Mapoulo is known to be a staunch supporter of President Jacob Zuma, and is a political ally of both Limpopo Premier Cassel Mathale and ANC Youth League leader Julius Malema.

Mapoulo this week confirmed that his wife received a taxi but denied that it was a kickback to reward him for giving Mogashoa a tender.

He said his wife was an “independent businesswoman by right”, and had an ongoing business relationship with Mogashoa even before he became mayor.

Mogashoa also says he bought the taxi for Dedenkie Mapoulo because she was his business partner in a company, the name of which he refused to provide.

“I have known Dedenkie for a long time. She is a sub-contractor of another project of mine. She is a partner in the business and if she says: ‘Of the money we have made, let us buy a taxi’, there is no problem,” said Mogashoa.

Neither Mogashoa nor the Mapoulos were willing to provide more details of the “project” Dedenkie Mapoulo was working on for which she was supposedly given the minibus.

An independent search by City Press showed that Mogashoa and Dedenkie Mapoulo were business partners in a company called Limpopo Road Repairs, but that Mapoulo resigned as a director in January last year – long before the water-reticulation tender was awarded.



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