Johannesburg – ANC Johannesburg Regional deputy secretary Dan Bovu was granted bail in the Commercial Crimes Court for alleged fraud and theft.
Bovu was granted R5000 bail after he handed himself over to police on Wednesday morning, spokesperson Jolidee Matongo told News24.
He pleaded not guilty to the crimes. He is expected back in court on February 3.
Matongo said the case was initially opened in 2009 for Bovu's alleged involvement in fraudulent activities carried out by him as a member of the Thembilihle Trust.
"The allegation is that a member of the public paid money into the Trust account and in return expected the Trust to build a house for him and this never materialised," said Matongo.
Bovu was not prosecuted, however the matter resurfaced in 2015. The prosecution authority decided that there was insufficient evidence to prosecute, Matongo said.
Pressure from DA coalition
"The case has now resurfaced as a result of Mayor [Herman] Mashaba and the DA coalition pushing for comrade Dan to be charged and prosecuted.
"Comrade Dan Bovu has since offered to recuse himself from ANC and City of Joburg activities while this matter is before the courts. We have agreed to give comrade Dan the space he needs to deal with the matter."
Bovu served as the Member of the Mayoral Committee (MMC) for Housing under the previous administration led by Parks Tau.
According to Mashaba, a complainant alleged that he was looking for a stand in the Vlakfontein area and was introduced to Bovu's co-accused who allegedly told him that he was working for the Thembelihle Development Trust, which was assisting people to buy stands in the area.
The complainant was allegedly told to pay R5000 for the stand.
"After he paid R5000 for the stand, the second accused told him to come on a weekend to choose a stand which he likes," Mashaba said.
"The complainant alleged that he started building the foundation of the house on the stand he chose. When the walls were still being built, the complainant alleged that he was told by his builders that an ANC Councillor (Dan Bovu) stopped them from continuing with building the house.
Mashaba said Bovu allegedly told the complainant to pay a deposit of between R2000 and R4000 into the account of the Thembelihle Development Trust.
"This act of fraud and corruption from within the ranks of the ANC comes as no surprise to the new administration."