Theft charges misguided - Satawu

2013-02-28 11:37

Johannesburg - Criminal charges against several former Satawu office bearers are misguided and politically motivated, the union said on Thursday.

"The union is being attacked even at workplaces by people who are trying to erode our membership," said spokesperson Vincent Masoga.

"We will, however, respect the processes of the court."

Former office bearers Zenzo Mahlangu, former president Ezrom Mabyana and former deputy president Robert Mashego are expected to appear in the Johannesburg Special Crime Court in April.

They face fraud and theft charges related to millions of rand missing from the SA Railways and Harbour Workers Union Trust.

They are all out on bail.

Millions missing

According to the Hawks, the accused allegedly stole R8.2m from the trust and bought luxury vehicles and houses.

It has emerged that an additional R10m is also missing.

"The three are the only accused in the case so far," said spokesperson Captain Paul Ramaloko.

Masoga blamed the union's former president Ephraim Mphahlele, who has since joined a splinter union.

The three spent the money according to agreements and guidelines of the trust.

"Mphahlele, as president, oversaw the union's operations, including the trust. He is making this look like a crime."

Mphahlele called for an investigation into the union's finances after he left.

Masoga said the union's former leadership had received a report from the trustees about the programs of the trust, which they found to be in order.

"They have not stolen any money. Transactions were done according to the provisions of the trust."


  • dkh.khuzwayo - 2013-02-28 11:49

    Yawwwwwn, seems like every criminal actvity is now classified as "political persecution". If they are indeed innocent then they will be acquitted accordingly, can we wait for that process to unfold before making these irresponsible statements.

  • womba.wonder - 2013-02-28 12:01

    If you've done nothing wrong you have nothing to fear.

      Strikeback - 2013-02-28 12:18

      Whatever position one has in any union, the focus should be on the member's interrests first. Let the law take it's course and when the results are out, then make a comment. The above statement is probably not acceptable to the office bearers. They must think I am stupid to suggest that the member's interrests be guarded! Money, money, money - makes your fingers grow!!

  • Dazza22 - 2013-02-28 12:25

    BEE at its best

  • patricia.dewet.92 - 2013-02-28 12:34

    Investigate Mphahlele to, it sounds an easy way to get rid of opposition, as he is starting a new union.

  • TSB001 - 2013-02-28 12:53

    its only R8.2m for houses and cars. Like Nkandla, its a cultural thing?

      jj.jeno.1 - 2013-02-28 14:39

      Funny how this sort of statement is made about it being cultural (and accepted) but the minister makes a remark about Afrikaans males and you guys are up in arms. Bloody hypocrites...and the reason why things won't change.

      stirrer.stirrer - 2013-02-28 14:57

      JJ_D, there difference is that Lulu told a blatant racist lie, while there are new theft and corruption cases coming to the fore on a daily basis, all fact and well documented. Or do you want to dispute Nkandla? So yes, it must be a cultural thing, I cannot think of any other explanation.

      jj.jeno.1 - 2013-02-28 15:12

      Whose disputing Nkandla? What I am saying is that accepting certain generalisations and not others (when it suits you) is hypocritical. And no, it is not a cultural thing. Otherwise, Oscar's case would be a cultural thing (it isn't), I would be a thief (I am not). Please don't talk rubbish, there are bad seeds among all races, to paint everyone with the same brush is nonsense.

  • SJ - 2013-02-28 12:55

    Misguided my lily white behind, rather these should have been laid long ago.

  • Mlondolozi Fulani - 2013-02-28 15:08

    As SATAWU member i wish my fellow members should hold their horses watch patiently as the law takes its course, we got nothing to lose but everything to gain,

  • Andries Mabjana - 2013-12-27 12:18

    The three former presidency are criminals and they must be brought to book, charged and serve their terms in prison.

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