DA goes ahead with fraud charges against Theo Van Vuuren

IT'S DONE: eMalahleni municipal manager Theo Van Vuuren is accused by DA of being in charge of the municipality that is allegedly planning to purchase mayor Lindiwe Ntshalintshali's car. PICTURE BY Caxton Media

The fraud and corruption charges against the troubled municipal manager – Theo Van Vuuren – emanate from mayor Lindiwe Ntshalintshali’s aborted attempt to purchase a R1.5m SUV.

The Democratic Alliance in the Mpumalanga province has announced that they will now bring forward new evidence of fraud and corruption against the eMalahleni municipal manager.

The party says this follows a council sitting a week ago where it appeared that Ntshalintshali will now proceed with buying the R1.5 million car.

The DA’s Naritha Naidu in the eMalahleni municipality said the purchase of Ntshalintshali’s R1.5 million SUV “was being slipped into the budget”.

013NEWS has also learnt that a tender for the purchase of the car was put in the public in December last year. This after it was withdrawn following widespread protests in September.

The advertisement calling for the purchase of a “LUXURY MAYORAL VEHICLE” which opened on 13 Dec 2016.

“The chief financial officer of the municipality and the mayor have once again tried to sneak in the purchase of the vehicle as a service delivery item alongside capital projects in the 2016/17 adjustment budget,” Naidu said this week.

SEE ALSO: Lindiwe Ntshalintshali slams DA ‘noise-makers’.

“The purchase of the mayor’s vehicle mysteriously falls under two vote numbers from two different sources of income that when combined form the R1.5 million that they claim was “saved” from Municipal Infrastructure Grant (MIG) projects that were reduced,” she said.

The DA laid the charges of fraud and corruption against Van Vuuren under section 173 of the Municipal Finance Management Act in October 2016 to stop the purchase of the car and say this follows last week’s council sitting in which they discovered the purchase has now been “slipped into the municipal budget” and they will give cops new evidence.

“We will submit further evidence to supplement the fraud and corruption charges filed against Van Vuuren,” Naidu said.

Municipal spokesman Kingdom Mabuza said it was not true they have slipped the car in the budget.

“The municipality is not planning on buying a car until the new financial year,unless the old vehicle,which has travelled 160 000km totally breaks down,” Mabuza said.

(edited by ZK)

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