Hawks

Municipal manager in dock for illegal dealings worth R5 million

Pretoria – The Municipal Manager of Swellendam Local Municipality in the Western Cape, Mr Cecil Mark Africa (70) was released on warning when he appeared at the George Regional Court on Wednesday after he was arrested by the Hawks for illegal dealings amounting to R5 million.

It is alleged that Africa, who was the Director of Planning and Development at George Municipality as well as the Municipal Manager of the same municipality between 2004 and 2008, unlawfully and intentionally failed to take reasonable steps to prevent unreasonable, irregular and wasteful expenditure.

He allegedly went against the legal opinion from the National Treasury and went on with the establishment of a Section 21 company, the George Housing Association (GHA) which he made people believe that it would address the housing challenges within the municipality.

Africa then made misrepresentations to the council and authorized funds amounting to R5 million to the company over a period of three years.

Investigations revealed that no house was ever built by the company and none of the things which were put forward as the objectives of GHA was ever achieved.

Africa, who was charged with the contravention of section 173(1)(a) of the Local Government: Municipal Finance Act, will appear again at the same court on 15 April 2016.