Ace Magashule corruption case postponed to November 3
Share this article:
Johannesburg - The corruption, fraud and money-laundering case against suspended ANC secretary-general Ace Magashule has been postponed again.
Magashule and his 15 co-accused briefly appeared in the Free State High Court in Mangaung. The charges against them relate to the R255 million asbestos roofs eradication project.
Judge President Cagney Musi postponed the matter until November 3, for a pre-trial conference.
Magashule’s lawyer Lawrence Hodes SC asked prosecutor Johan de Nysschen to give his clients the list of witnesses implicating the former Free State premier.
De Nysschen said he would consider Magashule’s request.
The court is expected to hear an application under section 212B of the Criminal Procedure Act which deals with proof of undisputed facts in the matter.
”We are entitled to the list of witnesses. I have never in my life been involved in corruption,” Magashule said outside court.
National Prosecuting Authority spokesperson Mthunzi Mhaga said the prosecution was happy that the matter was going ahead.
Mhaga said the NPA was hopeful that the matter would go on trial in the first term of next year.
He said Magashule’s request for a list of witnesses did not make sense as the accused were served with a full indictment.
The charge sheet details the counts Magashule is facing, among them allegedly using his influence as Free State premier to secure more than R1.1m in payments from businessman Igo Mpambani, who was murdered in 2017.
Magashule allegedly instructed Mpambani and his company, Diamond Hill Trading 71, to make the payments of more than R1.1m between June 2015 and January 2016.
Prosecutors state that Magashule should be found guilty of corruption for breaching the Prevention and Combating of Corrupt Activities Act. He is accused of facilitating the payment of R53 550 towards the settlement of tuition fees for former SA Revenue Service chief officer: legal counsel and one-time acting judge Refiloe Mokoena’s daughter in August 2015.
The NPA said the payment amounted to abuse of a position of authority, breach of trust and/or violation of his legal duty or a set of rules.
Mpambani and Diamond Hill Trading 71 also paid R300 000 to Griffin Edge for the acquisition of 200 electronic tablets, also allegedly at Magashule’s request.
Other payments made by Mpambani or his company, allegedly at Magashule's insistence, include R250 000 to Astra Travel, towards travel expenses of a delegation to Cuba and R30 000 to an individual identified as SWC Nkate.