The National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) says the Eastern Cape Health MEC, Sindiswa Gomba, and 10 other defendants facing charges of corruption, money laundering, fraud and municipal financial administration law violations linked to the Nelson Mandela funeral scandal should be held accountable.

The ANC in the Eastern Cape has called on the party’s senior members implicated in the case to step aside.

Nelson Mandela funeral fraud scandal suspects in court:

The alleged fraud amounts to R10 million that was siphoned from the Buffalo City Municipality by flouting tender processes during the funeral in 2013. The NPA says R5.9 million was allegedly transferred before the former municipal manager, Andile Fani, halted the further payment of R4.1 million.

The accused were released on bail earlier on Friday after briefly appearing in the East London Magistrate’s Court on fraud and corruption charges.

Accused in the Nelson Mandela funeral fraud case granted bail:

NPA spokesperson, Sipho Ngwema, says the seven-year-old case was initially provisionally withdrawn by the NPA as more investigations had to be concluded.

“We have tied up everything that we had and we made sure that we leave no stone unturned it’s a case that would have to go to trial. You’d also have amongst the charges corruption because there were corrupt activities making sure that they manipulate the systems. The MEC at the time was a member of council and she used her influence to manipulate decisions that led the flow of funds to entities that were selected to receive the funds of R10 million,” says Ngwema.

In 2017, Public Protector, advocate Busisiwe Mkhwebane, ordered civil action to recover public money squandered by various organs of the state for Mandela’s funeral.