Murder of North West businessman condemned

2015-10-03 19:35
Murdered businessman Wandile Bozwana. (NorthWestZA, Facebook)

Murdered businessman Wandile Bozwana. (NorthWestZA, Facebook)

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Pretoria - The South African National Civic Organisation in the North West Province has expressed shock and condemned the killing of businessman Wandile Bozwana, who was gunned down in Pretoria.

"We wish to condemn in the strongest terms possible the cold blooded murder and convey our condolences to the Bozwana family, his comrades in the ANC and broad revolutionary alliance, his business associates and partners. We call on police not to leave any stone unturned until those responsible for his horrendous death are brought to book," said provincial chairperson, Paul Sebegoe.

Bozwana died in hospital on Friday night following the shooting. Bozwana and a colleague, Mpho Baloyi, were travelling on the N1 north from Johannesburg at about 16:00.

Both were shot when gunmen in a silver grey BMW M3 allegedly pulled up next to their car near the Garsfontein off-ramp and opened fire on the branded Renault Clio.

About 12 bullets hit the car with nine of them hitting Bozwana, five in the lower back. Baloyi - who was driving the Clio - was shot twice, but managed to drive to a car dealership near Menlyn Shopping Centre to seek help.

Questions raised

Sebegoe appealed for calm and called on communities to come forward with information that might assist police in their investigation. Sebegoe added that people should desist from spreading conspiracy theories, but rather focus on assisting police.

"Unfounded speculations will only serve to mislead the investigation and advance the nefarious agenda of those who seek to sow divisions and disunity," he said.

The Democratic Alliance caucus leader in the North West Legislature Chris Hattingh said the death came as a shock, but it raised a lot of questions.

Hattingh added that the shooting appeared to be a hit. “As the dust is starting to settle after the shock of the horrific assassination of Wandile Bozwana, long and outstanding questions and allegations about Bozwana’s business relationship with the North West Provincial Government once again become prominent,” he said.

Hattingh added that according to the North West MEC for Public Works, Madoda Sambatha, Bozwana had contracts in excess of R1bn from the North West Provincial and Local Government and was currently involved in government-awarded projects estimated at R305m.

“The Democratic Alliance calls for an in depth investigation that should go beyond the assassination and into the heart of North West tender procedures involving Bozwana and other regular beneficiaries. This investigation should be politically independent and should include life-style audits of high ranking politicians and officials involved in North West tender allocations and must be tabled for public scrutiny and debate in the Provincial Legislature,” he said.

Bozwana was a North West businessman, ANC funder and former provincial treasurer. He was very outspoken and took the provincial government to court on numerous occasions.

Tender battles

In September he won a court case to attach a state bank account – with a R30m balance and 44 vehicles belonging to the province’s public works department – over a disputed payment.

The bank account, known as the revenue fund, consisted of the exchequer account – used to receive the province’s equitable share from Treasury for investment purposes – and the paymaster and general account – used for the department to attend to its daily operations.

The provincial government took the case to the Constitutional Court and argued that the court orders attaching the provincial bank account and 44 vehicles had a negative effect on service delivery, and a section of the State Liability Act prohibits that such orders be granted.

Bozwana was very vocal about business dealings in the North West and had organised businessmen to complain about the type of treatment they were getting. They accused North West Premier Supra Mahumapelo of enriching himself, interfering in government procurement and influencing the awarding of tenders to those close to him.

Attempts to get comment from the ANC’s Dakota Legoete were unsuccessful. Numerous phone calls were made to him but other people answered the phone and said he was not available. He also did not respond to a text message.

Read more on:    wandile bozwana  |  pretoria  |  crime

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