Former State Security Minister Bongani Bongo, his ex-wife Sandile Nkosi, and ten others have appeared briefly at the Nelspruit Magistrate’s Court in Mpumalanga on 69 counts of corruption, fraud, theft, money laundering and contravention of the Public Finance Management Act.
The case has been postponed to January next year. The accused are out on bail of R10 000 each.
However, some have applied for their bail conditions to be relaxed and this application will be heard on the 25th of this month.
The National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) says in a statement that among the allegations is that a farm was purchased at Emalahleni by the Mpumalanga Department of Human Settlements for R37,5 million.
Full statement from the NPA:
The NPA says the owner of the farm at the time was paid just R15 million.
The Prosecuting Authority says it had hoped the case would have been ready for trial later this year. However, they say the lawyers could only get a date for January and September next year.
NPA Spokesperson Sipho Ngwema says three of the accused – Harrington Dhlamini, Blessing Singwane and Boy Dube – have applied of their bail conditions to be relaxed and this will be heard later this month.
“They [all accused] were arrested in October last year. His [Bongo’s] ex-wife was arrested in March this year. This is in connection with the syndicate that was swindling the Human Settlements Department in Mpumalanga, where they purported to be buying properties, particularly farms on behalf of the Department whilst in turn, the money found its way to various members of the syndicate but also they received gratification from a number of other players in the syndicate. The state wished that they could start this matter this year in September or August, unfortunately, because the lawyers have been busy we have not been able to get a date for trial this year and this is why the trial will take place between the 10 and the 14 of January 2022 as well as the 24 of January and 18 of September 2022. Three others, which is Dlamini, Singwane and Dube have applied for bail conditions to be relaxed. And that applications will take held on the 25th of May 2021.”