The accused in the Nelson Mandela funeral fraud case have been granted bail of R1 000 each in the East London Magistrate’s Court on Friday morning.
Eleven people appeared in court while another is in self-isolation.
Among the suspects are the Eastern Cape MEC for Health, Sindiswa Gomba, and African National Congress Regional chairperson Phumlani Mkolo.
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 National Prosecuting Authority says R5.9 million was allegedly transferred before the former Municipal Manager, Andile Fani, halted the further payment of R4.1 million.
The suspects had to surrender their passports as part of the bail conditions.
In the video below, SABC News Reporter Abongile Jantjies spoke the NPA before the court proceedimgs:
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.
Mkhwebane found that about R300 million was unlawfully, irregularly or wastefully spent by among others the Eastern Cape Development Corporation and the Eastern Cape Parks: