New house owner has 'no ties to Malema'

2013-07-23 17:35
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Malema property sold

Another property belonging to Julius Malema was auctioned. Bidders arrived at the Flora Park property in Polokwane, where the house sold for R1.4m. See all the pictures.

Johannesburg - There are no ties between Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) leader Julius Malema and the town planner, who bought his Polokwane home on auction on Tuesday, the buyer said.

Tshimangadzo Makhokha told reporters he had no links with the expelled president of the ANC Youth League.

"That one is expelled. I am a full ANC member. That one, he is no longer a member of ANC," said Makhokha, who wore a leather jacket emblazoned with ANC emblems.

He said his interest in the house had nothing to do with the fact that it had been owned by Malema.

Makhokha, who had hoped to pay R1.2m, forked out R1.4m for the three-bedroom house, which has an entertainment area, a swimming pool, a dining room, a lounge, a kitchen and two bathrooms.

He said he had longed to buy the house ever since it was advertised several weeks ago, and had viewed it several times since then.

"I am excited to buy this house. I am going to use [it] as extra offices of Khoza Development Properties," he said.

Makhokha has a stake in the property company.

Auctioneer Aggie Stroh, of Eli Stroh Properties, who had expected the property to fetch R1.5m, said he was satisfied with the sale.

Besides its high wall, the house was not unlike other properties in the area.

Stroh advised Makhokha to consult the local municipality about the abnormally high wall, which appeared to be almost double the height of others in the area.

"... You see the black marks around the wall, that is where the legal wall height is, but [the] front wall, it is illegal. It is too high," he said.

He had emphasised the condition of the wall because, under consumer law, the condition of a product had to be explained before it was sold.

The house plan was approved by the Polokwane municipality in December 2007, when Malema chaired the ANCYL in Limpopo.

In court

Malema's tomato and cabbage farm, which was auctioned last month, also had a giant brick-wall, which other farmers said was unusual.

Bidding for the house at 23 Mopani Street, Flora Park, lasted only a few minutes on Tuesday. An opening bid of R500 000 was followed by a bid of R600 000.

The SA Revenue Service (Sars) attached the house to recoup a R16m tax debt owed by Malema.

Malema's incomplete mansion in Sandton, Johannesburg, was sold at auction for R5.9m in May. His farm in Limpopo fetched R2.5m at auction in June.

Several of his household goods were also auctioned off earlier in the year.

Earlier, Sars turned down a R4m settlement offer on the homes.

During a recent court appearance at Polokwane Magistrate’s Court, Malema said he was living on hand-outs, but refused to give more details. He said he feared the taxman would follow him.

"It has been very difficult. I depend on generosity. It is not donation. If I say donation, I will be in trouble with the taxman," he said in June.

Malema was appearing in the court in Polokwane on charges of fraud, corruption, money laundering, and racketeering. He is out on bail of R10 000.

His co-accused are his business associates Lesiba Gwangwa, Kagisho Dichabe, Helen Moreroa, and Makgetsi Manthata. They are out on R40 000 bail each.

The State alleges Malema and the others misrepresented themselves to the Limpopo roads and transport department, leading to a R52m contract being awarded to On-Point Engineering.

According to court papers, Malema had business ties with Gwangwa, a director of On-Point Engineering. Malema's Ratanang Family Trust was an indirect shareholder in On-Point.

The department paid the company R43m.

According to the charge sheet, Malema allegedly substantially benefited from this payment, knowing the money formed part of the proceeds of crime.

All five have proclaimed their innocence.

The case will be heard from 18 to 29 November.

Read more on:    anc  |  eff  |  sars  |  julius malema  |  polokwane

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