Eastern Cape public works MEC Babalo Madikizela has denied allegations that he improperly benefited from the R1.1 million meant for the memorial service of the late Winnie Madikizela-Mandela.
Speaking to SAFM on Monday, his lawyer Mvuso Notyesi said the MEC would take the matter to court on review, further slamming Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane’s report as “fundamentally wrong”.
Mkhwebane’s office on Friday released a report into “allegations of corruption, maladministration or misuse of public funds by senior and executive Eastern Cape government officials and the Mbizana Local Municipality”, and found that Madikizela allegedly benefited to the tune of R350,000 which was paid into his wife’s alleged company, IPM Plant Hire.
According to the report, the provincial department of sport, recreation, arts and culture and the Mbizana Local Municipality (MLM) decided to host a memorial service for the late Madikizela-Mandela, and the department was responsible for providing R1.1 million.
“On 1 August 2018, Mr Madikizela further instructed Mr Bam to deposit a sum of R350,000 into the FNB account of IPM Plant Hire. Mr Bam deposited the said amount in two payments, one was made the same day in an amount of R250,000 and R100,000 was made on 2 August 2018 as the bank limits did not allow all transactions on the same day,” reads the public protector’s report.
“Mr Madikizela personally benefited R350,000 from the amount of R1.1 million which were certainly public funds that went into that account, owned by his wife as set out in evidence.”
But Madikizela’s lawyer claims the public protector got it wrong.
“My client was shocked by the findings of the public protector because, in many respects, he was not informed that there would be such findings. Secondly, he is taking the matter to court for a review and we have been instructed to launch an application; that’s what we’re presently doing. This week we’ll be serving the application and it will be on an urgent basis,” said Notyesi.
“The findings of the public protector are based on incorrect principles of law, they are flawed and the client denied any wrongdoing and in fact knows no wrongdoing on his part. These findings followed an incorrect procedure having arrived at this conclusion. She ignored a lot of information that she should have considered. The findings are fundamentally wrong.”
Read Madikizela’s statement below: