Shabangu linked to yet another lucrative police lease – report

2011-06-03 09:05

Businessman Roux Shabangu has been linked to another multimillion-rand police lease deal for a building twice the size required by government.

The R137 million lease for a building in the Pretoria CBD was to house the police department’s Independent Complaints Directorate (ICD), the Mail & Guardian (M&G) reported.

The 10-year lease, which the M&G said it had seen, was signed in April 2009 by the department of public works.

Public Protector Thuli Madonsela is investigating another lease agreement involving a new police office in Durban after completing a similar probe in Pretoria.

Both deals involve Shabangu, national police commissioner General Bheki Cele, and the public works department.

Shabangu’s business partner, Japie van Niekerk, told the M&G that Shabangu bought the building in Vermeulen Street as his political connections told him public works wanted to lease it.

Van Niekerk lent Shabangu the money to buy the building.

Neither Shabangu nor the department commented on the allegations.

Shabangu’s company, Majestic Silver Trading 275, reportedly bought the building from property owner Sayed Mia in September 2008 for R23 million.

Shabangu and Van Niekerk “mysteriously transferred it between them twice” and the building ended up owned by Majestic Silver for an escalated price of R41.8 million. Shabangu owed this to Van Niekerk’s company.

In terms of the lease agreement, government would pay Shabangu R729 280 a month for the first year, escalating by 10% a year.

It was not clear whether public works put it out to open tender before signing the lease.

ICD spokesperson Moses Dlamini told the newspaper he did not know whether an open tender process was followed, but the ICD had submitted a needs assessment and budget to public works.

The ICD needed 3 668 square metres of space, with 105 parking bays, at a budget of R6.2 million for the first year of the lease.

The Vermeulen Street building offers 7 614 square metres and 102 bays, costing R8.8 million in the first year.

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