ANCYL to ask treasury about Malema probe

2010-02-17 11:01

The ANC Youth League wants the National Treasury to inform it of

any investigating involving its president Julius Malema.

“The ANCYL will officially write to National Treasury to ask about

the investigations and check if those are ever linked to the president of the

ANC Youth League,” spokesman Floyd Shivambu said in a statement.

This follows a City Press article reporting that Finance Minister

Pravin Gordhan had launched a probe into corruption in the Limpopo government’s

tender procurement processes.

According to the report, quoting top secret documents, the

investigation was launched in November, would be conducted by the National

Treasury, the Special Investigating Unit and the SA Revenue Service, and was

“likely to affect people in high places in the ruling ANC.”

City Press reported that Limpopo Premier Cassel Mathale was a

“close ally” of both President Jacob Zuma and Malema.

Malema himself wielded “considerable influence” in the Limpopo

government as he was close to several MEC’s and provincial leaders.

The newspaper reported that analysts believed Malema had clout in

the awarding of tenders – one of the province’s “top construction companies,”

Bitline, was owned by Malema’s friend and ally Ali Boshielo.

The ANCYL said yesterday that Malema was “willing to clarify

anything that will be brought to him within the country’s laws.

He would ask the National Treasury to “publicly disassociate”

itself from the City Press allegations if there was no investigation.

Shivambu threatened to lodge an official complaint about the story

with the press ombudsman and take legal action.

The ANCYL felt the story “might be misconstrued as true in certain

circles”, and therefore sought to “put to rest” the allegations.

It viewed the story as an attempt to discredit Malema through a

journalist “used by agent provocateurs”.

City Press News Editor Japhet Ncube said the paper stood by its story, which passed the newspaper’s accuracy test and was also approved by the company’s lawyer, Willen de Klerk.

“The story was not about Malema, but it has scared a lot of people, so the noise is to be expected. Limpopo is the first province that is being probed, which implies that it is also probably the most corrupt. This has the potential to have people running scared and getting jitters. It’s a pity that the ANCYL had to react in this manner, but we urge them to use all available channels to challenge the story and not resort to personal attacks.”

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