Former Eastern Cape Health MEC Sindiswa Gomba has described the charges leveled against her regarding former president Nelson Mandela’s funeral money scandal case as ‘hogwash’ after pleading not guilty.
Gomba and her eleven co-accused are facing fraud charges relating to R10 million linked to the memorial and funeral service for Mandela in 2013.
The accused appeared in the East London High Court for pre-trial proceedings and all pleaded not guilty to the charges. The trial date has been set for the 11th of April. Gomba maintains her innocence.
“Let me be frank about it, this is hogwash and at the end of the day, you start to wonder what credible institution that can come up with such charges. If you look at charges 1 to 4, they have an indication that I was in meetings nothing else that I was in cohorts with other people in procurement. I don’t have any role as a politician in procurement to start to say that I was in a meeting that chose a service provider is a blatant lie and it is that court in Bisho that will speak to contents of such,” says Gomba.
The National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) says it’s confident of securing convictions against the accused in the scandal.
“We were not expecting the pleas of guilty because they have maintained that they are not guilty and as such their plea explanation was not detailed in terms of revealing anything so it does not put us anywhere in terms of preparing our evidence because we always maintained that as the prosecution, we are certain and confident that we will secure convictions against all the accused in respect of all the 27 counts,” NPA spokesperson, Mthunzi Mhaga explains.
Accused in the Nelson Mandela funeral scandal set to appear before East London High Court: