Citizen Reporter
2 minute read
11 Mar 2020
1:08 pm

Gumede charge sheet laid bare in Durban court

Citizen Reporter

The embattled former eThekwini mayor alleges she had been arrested without the charges being read to her and claims to have never seen them before.

Former eThekwini mayor Zandile Gumede. Picture: Doctor Ngcobo / African News Agency (ANA)

The charges that former eThekwini mayor Zandile Gumede claims to have never seen in the ongoing case against her and 16 others related to a multimillion-rand Durban Solid Waste tender scandal were laid bare for all to see when one of her co-accused appeared in the Durban Commercial Crimes Court earlier this week.

Times Select reports that eThekwini city manager Sipho Nzuza appeared in court on Tuesday after being instructed by the Hawks to hand himself over to police on the same day. He was then arrested and formally charged with fraud, contravention of the municipal finance act, money laundering, and corruption.

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Senior state advocate Ashika Lucken argued that his involvement in the scandal was as pivotal as the other officials implicated in the matter, Gumede included. Along with 14 other city officials and entities, Gumede and Nzuza stand accused of colluding with corporate entities to circumvent the outcome of the supply chain management protocols of the municipality.

Their actions are in contravention of the Municipal Finance Management Act (MFMA), the Municipal Supply Chain Management Regulations and the Provisions of the Adjustment of Fines Act.

“Nzuza aligned himself with the outcome of the tender process to ensure certain service providers would end up with tenders,” said Lucken.

He was granted R50,000 bail – the same amount granted to Gumede and Mthembu. Nzuza is expected back in court on 16 April where he will appear alongside his co-accused.

When contacted for comment by Times Select, Gumede was unavailable. She had previously told the publication she would be glad once she saw the charges as she alleges she had been arrested without the charges being read to her.

Gumede is accused of using her political status to influence the appointment of senior eThekwini personnel responsible for supply chain management, as well as legal matters and human resources.

She is also accused of giving instructions to the bid specification committee (BSC), bid adjudication committee (BAC) and the bid evaluation committee (BEC), despite the fact that mayors are not allowed to be involved in tender specification processes.

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