Graft trial set for November

2009-07-16 00:00

THE corruption trial of KwaZulu-Natal businessman Jabulani Mabaso and the former chief financial officer for the KZN Treasury and Department of Education (DOE), Pamela Bosman-Zulu, has been transferred to the high court in Pietermaritzburg.

The two face allegations that they committed acts of corruption, forgery, fraud and money laundering arising from the award of a tender to Mabaso’s company, Indiza Infrastructure Solutions (Pty) Ltd, to act as an agent to supply books and stationery to schools in the province.

They appeared briefly before Pietermaritzburg magistrate Divesh Mootheram yesterday and were told that their case has been provisionally set down for trial in the high court on November 4.

The company is named as one of the accused in the case.

They have been served with a draft charge sheet that is over 40 pages long, detailing the allegations against them. Mabaso, who is on bail of R1 million, faces a total of 25 counts and Zulu faces four main charges.

The crimes were allegedly committed between 2005 and 2007. One of the allegations is that over an 18- month period, Indiza invoiced the DOE for services rendered in the amount of R479 290 587,97 for stationery that had been supplied by African Spirit, a company that was allegedly created by Mabaso and which allegedly supplied stationery to Indiza at inflated prices. The goods were in turn supplied to the department.

In fact, the state alleges that in terms of the contract, Indiza was to act as a consultant or agent to procure the necessary goods and services on behalf of the department and was to be paid a set management fee.

It is alleged it was clear the DOE had not enlisted Indiza’s services as an ordinary supplier of goods, but as an agent to source and secure goods and services from other suppliers.

Mabaso is also charged with giving a benefit in the form of money and a vehicle to Pam Zulu as an inducement to her to award the tender for the supply of stationery to KZN schools to Indiza and ensure that all invoices submitted to the DOE were paid to Mabaso or Indiza.

Zulu is charged with corruption for accepting R200 000 allegeded to have been deposited into her bank account by a Gauteng businessman, Sandi Majali, managing director of the Imvume Group.

A further R170 727 was allegedly paid into the account of Honda Auto in East London for the purchase of a Honda vehicle for the adoptive mother or maternal aunt of Zulu via the trust account of Majali held by his attorney, Barry Aaron.

The money is alleged to have originated from Mabaso.

According to the charge sheet, Zulu and Mabaso laundered money through the trust account of Aaron and Majali.

It is alleged that R2 500 000 from Mabaso was deposited into Aaron’s trust account by Majali and that this money was the proceeds of illegal activities.

The state alleges that in order to conceal the source and movement of the money to Zulu, she had entered into a fraudulent sale of shares agreement with Majali.

It is alleged that Zulu misrepresented to the DOE in June 2006 that she had acquired a five percent holding in Majali’s company, New Era Capital (Pty) Ltd, that her shareholding was valued at R4 000 000 and that she had entered into a legal agreement with Majali for the sale of her shares to him. In that way any payments made to her would be declared to the DOE as a “legitimate financial interest” in terms of the Public Service Policy.

Zulu is on bail of R30 000.

ingrido@witness.co.za

Businessman Jabulani Mabaso and the former chief financial officer for the KZN Treasury and Education Department, Pamela Bosman-Zulu, face charges of corruption, forgery, fraud and money laundering.

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