DA takes credit for Hawks warrant on Ace Magashule, Newsline

The DA has claimed credit for the warrant of arrest that has been issued by the Hawks for ANC secretary-general Ace Magashule.

The Hawks confirmed on Tuesday afternoon that a warrant of arrest had been issued for Magashule linked to a R255 million Free State asbestos audit project.

Magashule is expected to hand himself over to the Hawks on Friday and appear in court on the same day.

This is the same case in which businessman Edwin Sodi and several former government officials were arrested and charged. Sodi and his co-accused were released on bail and had their assets seized by the Hawks.

The R255 million Free State asbestos contract was reported on prominently at the Zondo Commission of Inquiry into State Capture.

Sodi’s company Blackhead Consulting and its joint-venture partner Diamond Hill, owned now by deceased businessman Ignatious Mpambani, were awarded the contract in 2014.

In evidence presented at the commission, it was revealed that the contract was subcontracted twice and the final company which performed the asbestos audit did so for just over R20m.

Magashule was implicated in the deal and his former personal assistance faced questions at the inquiry over requests for payments that she made to Mpambani on behalf of Magashule.

DA leader John Steenhuisen wasted no time in placing his party as the whistle-blowers regarding corruption related to the project.

“After years of fighting for justice for the people of the Free State, the DA is delighted to hear of the warrant of arrest that was today issued for ANC Secretary-General, Ace Magashule, in connection to the R255m asbestos audit contract.

“It was the DA’s member of the Free State provincial legislature, Leona Kleynhans, who has pursued this case relentlessly since 2015, eventually culminating in the laying of charges against Magashule in May this year, which has ensured that Magashule finally be brought to book,” he said.

Steenhuisen blasted the ANC’s lack of action on corruption.

“It is indeed very telling that the first high-profile ANC arrest has been made because of the actions of the DA. With the facts staring him directly in the face, Ramaphosa still remained silent, sat on his hands, and did nothing. Ramaphosa’s claims to be a corruption-fighter are a complete and utter farce,” Steenhuisen said. | Political Bureau