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By Citizen Reporter


Residents call for Lenasia CPF Chairman Ebrahim Asvat to stepdown after son arrested for kidnapping and extortion

This is not the first time that residents have called for Asvat’s head to roll following allegations of illegal activities and corruption.

Lenasia residents have once again called for the chairman of the Lenasia Community Policing Forum (CPF) Ebrahim Asvat to step down after his son was arrested for his alleged involvement in a kidnapping and extortion case.

Active residents against crime are calling on the public to sign a petition in a bid to expose the “intimidation” in the legal process linked to kidnappings in South Africa.

In the petition, the residents question the legitimacy of the Lenasia CPF.

“For years we have questioned the election process of the CPF, finding it strange that a historic truck hijacker, known for his criminal involvement and consistent links to the Faizal Charloos syndicate could be elected to represent the Lenasia Community.”

The group said that Asvat is yet to respond to any allegations against him.

“Apart from the hogwash statement denying his relationship with Charloos, the CPF chairman hasn’t responded to any of the allegations against him in the past.  

“But this time it’s different … The public is demanding answers from the chairman of an office that represents the public of our community. The PUBLIC Community is asking publically, and we expect a public answer officially,” the group said.

The group has posed about thirty questions that they want Asvat to answer.

This is not the first time that residents have called for Asvat’s head to roll following allegation of illegal activities and corruption.

In March, residents accused Asvat of being corrupt and allegedly involved in illegal activities, including the latest spate of crime that hit Lenasia and the south of Johannesburg.

In a message, that was widely circulated on social media and also shared with The Citizen, the angry residents called for Asvat to be investigated by the Independent Police Investigative Directorate (Ipid).

The residents alleged that Asvat has been working with alleged Mozambican crime kingpin Faizal Charloos and other suspects including his wife Sadiya who were arrested by police on 18 March.

In a message to The Citizen, Asvat said as the chairperson of the Lenasia CPF he has always respected his position and served the community with honesty and integrity for the past eight years.

“There are baseless rumours circulating on social media, regarding my ‘alleged’ involvement in the kidnapping saga that has posed a great threat to our community and society at large. I further state that some of my dear friends were kidnapped and I felt the pain of the family and relief when the victims were returned safely.”

“I can categorically state that I have not done business with Faizel Charloos, nor do I have any involvement with the allegations he is facing,” Asvat said.

While Asvat challenged any community member to come forward should they have any queries about his position and work done for the community, he has a lot of explaining to do following the arrest of his son Ziyaad.

Police spokesperson Colonel Robert Netshiunda confirmed that Asvat’s son Ziyaad was arrested on Friday night after a warrant of arrest was issued against him.

“The suspect is alleged to have been involved in the R25 million extortion and intimidation case which emanated from the kidnapping of a Lenasia businessman who was later rescued by the Anti-Kidnapping Task Team in Johannesburg South earlier this year.”

“Eight other suspects, Thabani Tsotetsi, Kenny Langa, Nelson Khosa, Ahmed Ibrahim Illias, Faizal Charloos, Sadiyah Charloos, Ahmed Kazi and Sadiyah Rasool have remained in custody since their initial arrest in March this year.” said Netshiunda.

Ziyaad has since appeared in the Randburg Magistrates Court where the case was postponed to 19 May.

ALSO READ: Rules broken as Lenasia kidnapping suspect transferred from jail cell to hospital

During the police raids on houses in Lenasia, Lawley, Brackenhurst and Benoni, which are allegedly linked to Charloos and three of his alleged accomplices, police rescued kidnapped Gauteng businessman, 34-year-old Luqman Kazi.

Officers also found and seized R6 million in cash which is believed to be ransom paid on other kidnapping cases.

Since Charloos was handcuffed, several other suspects were nabbed in connection with the spate of kidnappings in Lenasia and the south of Johannesburg including senior CPF member, Ebrahim Seedat, his 23-year-old daughter Saadia Rasool and her 31-year-old husband Ahmed Kazi.

Charges were later dropped against Seedat.

Shortly after the sting operation, law enforcement officials arrested Abuhoreira, the brother of Charloos

Authorities also pounced on wanted suspect Irfaan Adamjee (known as “Muffins”), but he managed to escape after a high-speed case through Lenasia.

A source close to the investigation who was at the scene, told The Citizen that Muffins was considered dangerous after he threatened a Lenasia resident.

Last month, police also made a breakthrough in the case after officers identified a house in Ennerdale, linked to the arrested kidnapping suspects from Lenasia.

The discovery of the house marked another breakthrough for the crime intelligence anti-kidnapping unit, with more witnesses now providing information to the police, which could lead to incriminating evidence.

ALSO READ: Lenasia residents want CPF chair investigated, citing alleged links to kidnapping mastermind Faizal Charloos

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