2 West Rand mayors exonerated from the VBS Mutual Bank scandal

The ANC in the West Rand region of Johannesburg has welcomed the outcomes of their own investigations, launched into allegations that mayors Boyce Maneli and Maphefo Mogale-Letsie could have been involved in the VBS Mutual Bank scandal.

The party announced that its own internal investigations led by audit firm Deloitte and Touche, and the Treasury department in Gauteng into allegations that the two mayors deposited money into the VBS found no wrongdoing.

Maneli is the mayor of West Rand District Municipality (WRDM) while Mogale-Letsie is the mayor of Merafong City Municipality.

The WRDM had invested R81m into the now defunct VBS bank, while the Merafong municipality invested R50m.

The ANC's regional spokesperson Zaza Machakela said the party has been eagerly awaiting the outcomes of the investigations.

"In the political report to our regional conference held in July 2018, we committed ourselves to make public the outcomes of the forensic investigations into investments made by WRDM and MCLM upon finalisation. This was in support of the initiatives undertaken by Maneli and Mogale-Letsie who requested the Gauteng Provincial Treasury to institute investigations on behalf of the two municipalities," said Machakela.

"The reports do not implicate any councillors in the two municipalities, in particular both Executive Mayor Boyce Maneli and Maphefo Mogale-Letsie are not implicated in the management of the investments or are cited on any wrong doing in relation to the investments made into VBS Mutual Bank by the two institutions."

Not a surprise

He said it did not come as a surprise to the ANC West Rand region was not implicated in any scandal in the two municipalities as ANC Gauteng deputy provincial chairperson, Panyaza Lesufi, had reported to ANC branches and council caucuses of the four municipalities in the West Rand, that based on the preliminary report, the investments were an administrative action and did not involve the political principals.

Seven municipalities in Limpopo are on the brink of insolvency and could be placed under administration after they lost hundreds of millions of rands in investments into VBS Mutual Bank. A total of 10 municipalities in the province invested with VBS. Three municipalities, however, withdrew their investments following instructions from National Treasury.

Maneli and Mogale-Letsie will not appear before the party's Provincial Integrity Committee.

"As the ANC West Rand region, we commit ourselves in monitoring the implementation of the findings and recommendations against all officials identified by the reports as role players in the placement of  the investments into VBS Mutual Bank," said Machakela.

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