De Lille opens fraud case

For­mer mayor tar­gets four DA mem­bers, al­leg­ing they de­famed her

Cape Argus - - METRO - JA­SON FE­LIX ja­son.fe­lix@inl.co.za

FRAUD and defama­tion charges laid by for­mer Cape Town mayor Pa­tri­cia de Lille against four se­nior DA mem­bers yes­ter­day have been brushed off.

In April the four al­legedly cre­ated and or shared a forged au­di­tor-gen­eral (A-G) state­ment on so­cial me­dia.

A-G Kimi Mak­wetu sub­se­quently con­firmed that the state­ment was fake and the doc­u­ment pur­port­ing to rep­re­sent the in­sti­tu­tion forged. A so­cial me­dia post ti­tled

Pa­tri­cia de Lille ex­posed pur­ported to be a doc­u­ment from the of­fice of Mak­wetu with his sig­na­ture at­tached, and listed a num­ber of al­leged breaches by De Lille re­lated to the MyCiTi bus pro­cure­ment process.

De Lille ini­tially threat­ened to sue the mem­bers if they did not apol­o­gise in pub­lic.

The four DA se­nior mem­bers are two mem­bers of Par­lia­ment, DA deputy chief whip Mike Wa­ters and DA Na­tional Coun­cil of Prov­inces mem­ber Bron­wynn En­gel­brecht.

The other two are DA KwaZulu-Natal pro­vin­cial chair­per­son She­hana Ka­jee and DA branch ex­ec­u­tive Henk Hugo.

Asked for com­ment, Ka­jee said: “I know ex­actly why you are call­ing me and I am not go­ing to re­spond to any of this.”

Ef­forts to con­tact Hugo failed. Nei­ther he nor Wa­ters have re­sponded to mes­sages sent to them.

De Lille hung up her may­oral chain at the end of last month fol­low­ing a pro­tracted bat­tle with DA lead­ers.

The party had said it had lost con­fi­dence in her abil­ity to lead the City. It had also claimed she was guilty of sev­eral cor­rupt ac­tiv­i­ties while mayor.

In May, De Lille laid a for­mal com­plaint re­gard­ing the dis­tri­bu­tion of this forgery with James Selfe, chair­per­son of the DA’s Fed­eral Ex­ec­u­tive.

This com­plaint was in terms of the breach of the DA’s con­sti­tu­tion and its so­cial me­dia pol­icy to which mem­bers are re­quired to ad­here.

No ac­tion was taken by the DA against these mem­bers de­spite the se­ri­ous na­ture of this breach, she said.

DA leader Mmusi Maimane wrote to the A-G in Septem­ber stat­ing that the party could not take re­spon­si­bil­ity for what his sup­port­ers shared on so­cial me­dia.

“How­ever, these are not DA sup­port­ers; they are DA mem­bers, elected se­nior lead­ers in some cases.

“They must be ac­count­able to the pub­lic, they must ad­here to the DA’s so­cial me­dia pol­icy, the DA con­sti­tu­tion and the South African Con­sti­tu­tion. “I am tak­ing this ac­tion be­cause of the se­ri­ous na­ture of the fraud, as well as the to­tal dis­re­gard and dis­re­spect shown to a Chap­ter 9 in­sti­tu­tion, the of­fice of the Au­di­tor-Gen­eral, by pub­lic rep­re­sen­ta­tives,” De Lille said.

DA na­tional spokesper­son Solly Malatsi said: “We note the charges laid by Ms Pa­tri­cia de Lille and trust that the crim­i­nal jus­tice sys­tem will run its course as it should.

“We also look for­ward to the out­come of the SA Po­lice Ser­vice in­ves­ti­ga­tion into the cor­rup­tion charges against Ms De Lille.”

Bron­wynn En­gel­brecht

Henk Hugo

Mike Wa­ters

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