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Latest News

Wed, 21 Feb 2018
Fugitive Ajay Gupta still in the country

Ajay Gupta, who has officially been named a fugitive by the Hawks, is still on run — with the help of a security company.

Speaking in an interview with PowerFM on Friday morning, Hawk’s spokesperson Brigadier Hangwani Mulaudzi said that they know Ajay Gupta is still in the country and they also know the security company protecting him. The Hawks is set to engage with the company.

Mulaudzi said: “Those protecting him must know they are protecting a wanted suspect. They will be charged with aiding and abetting a suspect.”

Muladuzi also revealed that another director of a Gupta company is facing imminent arrest.

Officials at OR Tambo International Airport reportedly  told Eyewitness News (EWN) they’re working with the Hawks to establish the whereabouts of Ajay Gupta, who is now considered a fugitive.

OR Tambo International Airport spokesperson Leigh Gunkel-Keuler has told EWN that their records show that Ajay Gupta left the airport on a Dubai-bound Emirates flight 10 days ago. If he returned to South Africa, he may have done so through other ports of entry Gunkel-Keuler said.

A manhunt is underway for former President Jacob Zuma’s son, Duduzani after the Hawks descended on his Saxonwold mansion in a pre-dawn raid. Duduzani is being sought for his alleged involvement in the fraud scandal at the Estina dairy farm at Vrede in the Free State.

On Thursday, The Star newspaper reported that one of Duduzani’s business associates, Atul Gupta, was picked up while trying to flee the country.  According to the report, the pilot of the private aircraft Atul was on, refused to fly from Lanseria airport.

The Hawks had reportedly called on Atul to hand himself in or face being branded a ‘fugitive’, according to Business Day newspaper.

Mail & Guardian reporter Ra’eesa Pather reports from Bloemfontein that a large contingent of police were preventing journalists from entering the courtroom with spaces apparently being reserved for politicians.

After the intervention of the South African National Editor’s Forum (Sanef) and court officials, the Bloemfontein Regional Court has said it will look into making provisions for one reporter and one photographer per media house to enter the courtroom.

Update:

Eight people and three companies are implicated in the matter.

Ashu Chawla, Nazeem Howa, Varun Gupta, Ronica Ragavan, Peter Thabethe, Dr Tikisi Masiteng, Sylvia Dlamini and Kamal Vasram are appearing in Court 29 of the Bloemfontein magistrate’s court to face charges of fraud in connection with the Free State Vrede dairy farm project.

The accused face charges of fraud, theft, conspiracy to commit fraud and theft, contravening the Public Finance Management Act, contravening the Companies Act and contravening sections of the Prevention of Organised Crime Act.

Former Free State agriculture head Peter Thabethe was arrested on Wednesday after a an early morning raid at his home in Bloemfontein. Thabethe was the head of department at the time that Mosebenzi Zwane, who is now Minister of Mineral Resources, was the agriculture MEC.

Varun Gupta, the nephew of the Gupta brothers, along with his uncle Atul resigned in April 2016  as respective chairperson and chief executive of Oakbay Resources, in response to what they called a “sustained political attack”.

The two vacated their [...]

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Wed, 21 Feb 2018
Zuma staff in limbo as former president packs his bags

Former president Jacob Zuma has not briefed his staff members with regards to where their future lies‚ at least for those who were not employed permanently.

Former presidency director-general Frank Chikane‚ who was once a chief of staff of former president Thabo Mbeki‚ said Zuma would be allowed to keep one house for a month but has to clear the other official residence.

“The normal procedure is that when a president retires or when his term of office comes to an end‚ the president has a right to keep one of the houses for a month. As far as I’m concerned‚ the president has to release one of the houses and clear it up‚” said Chikane.

“Normally the [former] presidents keep the Pretoria one and clear up the Cape Town house because the president can stay in one of those houses while they are preparing to leave. The new president would then move into one of the houses but in most instances there’s no hurry [to move]‚” he added.

Chikane‚ who has been critical of Zuma as part of the ANC veterans structure‚ said the presidency system has been created in such a way that the outgoing leader is respected. “The staff that is attached to the president and are on contract‚ such as special advisor’s‚ they go with the president.

But there is core staff in the presidency that remain staff and don’t change‚” added Chikane. Zuma had three houses in Durban‚ Pretoria and Cape Town when he was president of the republic. Efforts to get hold of Zuma’s spokesperson‚ Bongani Ngqulunga‚ drew a blank.

Source: https://www.timeslive.co.za/sunday-times/news/2018-02-19-zuma-staff-in-limbo-as-former-president-packs-his-bags/

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Thu, 15 Feb 2018
Zuma makes NPA representations at the eleventh hour

President Jacob Zuma submitted his representations stating why he should not face prosecution for the now infamous 2009 spy types saga to the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) late on Wednesday evening.

The representations were initially supposed to be submitted in November 2017, but National Director of Public Prosecutions Shaun Abrahams extended the deadline to January 31, 2018.

NPA spokesperson Luvuyo Mfaku has confirmed that the president’s legal representatives submitted his representations at 21:00 at the NPA offices.

A Supreme Court of Appeal (SCA) ruling dismissed Zuma’s and the NPA’s application to appeal a high court ruling that the dropping of the corruption charges against him by then NPA boss Mkotedi Mpshe was “irrational”.

Mpshe dropped the charges, based on the so-called “Spy Tapes”, which were presented to him by Zuma’s legal team.

The tapes were made up of recordings of telephone conversations between then Scorpions boss Leonard McCarthy and former NPA boss Bulelani Ngcuka which Zuma’s legal team claimed showed political interference in the decision to charge the now president of South Africa.

On Wednesday, the DA released a statement saying it had written to Abrahams asking to be provided with a copy of Zuma’s submissions.

“The DA is entitled to Zuma’s full submission as the main litigant in this case, which has dragged on for almost a decade, costing ordinary South Africans an estimated R30-million or more in legal fees,” said James Selfe, chairperson of the DA federal council.

The party said it would engage thoroughly with the content and continue to ensure that Zuma has his day in court.

“For too long Zuma has evaded his day in court. Any other citizen would have had to answer to such charges in court, yet Zuma has been given special treatment and been allowed to make fresh representations on the same charges he faced in 2009,” said Selfe.—News24

 

Source: https://mg.co.za/article/2018-02-01-zuma-makes-representations-to-npa-on-corruption-charges-at-the-eleventh-hour

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