Best of City Press: Truth behind Ngcobo cult sex slaves, VBS Bank goes bust, and the Guptas' passport bonanza

2018-03-11 17:19
Community members attend a ceremony to honour the Ngcobo victims. (Ziyanda Zweni, Daily Sun)

Community members attend a ceremony to honour the Ngcobo victims. (Ziyanda Zweni, Daily Sun)

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Cape Town - In case you missed it, these are the some of the most popular stories from City Press on Sunday, March 11.

How Ngcobo cult kept its sex slaves

They had at least 40 "wives" - one as young as 12 - who felt "honoured" when it was their turn to provide leaders of the Mancoba Seven Angels Ministry with sexual satisfaction.

When police took the young women and girls away for questioning after a deadly shoot-out two weeks ago, they asked to be allowed to grieve after "losing their husbands".

Sordid details are now emerging of the killer cult in the Eastern Cape town of Ngcobo, whose leaders and members allegedly murdered five officers at the local police station last month.

Now a commission of inquiry into the Ngcobo massacre is on the cards.


VBS Bank goes bust

Just 18 months after shooting to prominence, VBS Mutual Bank faces the possibility of a spectacular crash, following Treasury's instruction to municipalities to stop investing with the institution.

The order was given early last year and states that the Municipal Finance Management Act (MFMA) forbids municipalities from investing in mutual banks. As a result, a number of councils withdrew more than R1 billion from the bank, causing a major liquidity crisis.

City Press can reveal that VBS's cash reserves are so low that its executives said that if main shareholders the Public Investment Corporation (PIC) and Vele Investments don't inject cash, the SA Reserve Bank (Sarb) is expected to place the entity under curatorship this week.


The Guptas' passport bonanza

The Gupta brothers have each been provided with a plethora of South African passports that will ensure they can still get around for a long time.

City Press' sister newspaper Rapport has obtained copies of computer records from the home affairs department which confirm that Atul Gupta currently has three valid South African passports.

His brother, Rajesh, has six to choose from.

These do not include passports that have already expired or been lost.

As a matter of fact, the South African government even sent another valid passport to Dubai three weeks ago where it was to be picked up by Ajay Gupta's wife Chetali. It is her third valid passport.


Sunset for the ANC Premier League

Regular columnist Mondli Makhanya writes: After the conclusion of the ANC's elective conference in Mangaung in 2012, Free State ANC chairperson Ace Magashule and his North West counterpart Supra Mahumapelo gathered their delegations in a corner of the conference hall for a pep talk.

The two leaders praised their delegates for remaining disciplined during the conference and ensuring the defeat of the so-called forces of change, who were seeking to replace then-ANC president Jacob Zuma with his deputy Kgalema Motlanthe. Magashule told North West delegates that when they got back home, they should redouble their efforts to get Mahumapelo installed as premier of the province to replace then incumbent Thandi Modise. There was a lot of backslapping as the two provinces pledged to work together.

The next few years were to see a formidable partnership between the two men who, together with Mpumalanga's David Mabuza, became known as the Premier League.


We have no choice but to be patient with the Proteas

Simnikiwe Xabanisa writes: Maybe it's a hangover from the sporting isolation days, but South African fans can be an incredibly insecure bunch.

Win one game and we act like it was never in doubt and we're never going to lose again, lose another one and we're the worst nation ever to play it. Few people struggle to handle sport's twin impostors - winning and losing - more than South Africans.

A great example of that was our reaction to the Proteas getting bowled out cheaply in their first innings of the first test against Australia in Durban. There was a collective wailing on social media about how useless the team was.

This is the same team that beat the number one ranked team in the world - India, powered by a caped Virat Kohli - 2-1 in January. Typical of our low self-esteem, we obsessed about the fact that, not only were the first two tests closely contested, the last one was lost convincingly.


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