South Africa News

Municipal official arrested for allegedly paying to access forensic report into maladministration

A 64-year-old assistant finance manager at the eMalahleni Local Municipality has appeared before the Witbank Magistrate’s Court facing corruption charges.

Edwin Mphikeleli Sibiya appeared in the Mpumalanga Court on Thursday after he was arrested by the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (also known as the Hawks) based in Middelburg.

It is alleged that in June last year, Sibiya was involved in the leaking of a confidential report that was compiled by a forensic company called AFIS into the maladministration investigation in the Mpumalanga municipality.

Hawks spokesperson in Mpumalanga, Captain Dineo Lucy Sekgotodi said an individual from the forensic company was paid R8,700 by the municipal official to gain access into the report.

“Information was received by the management (of the municipality) regarding the report circulating amongst the employees. A case was opened and referred to the Hawks for further investigation,” said Sekgotodi.

During the Hawks investigations, Sekgotodi said it was established that there were payment transactions from the account number of Sibiya to one of the forensic members’ team.

Findings of the Hawks investigations were submitted to the court and a warrant of arrest was authorised and executed against Sibiya.

“The accused was released on R5,000 bail and the case was postponed to December 13, 2023, for the arrest of other accused. Investigation continues,” said Sekgotodi.

On Thursday, IOL reported that two accused people and a business entity have appeared before the Middelburg Regional Court after they were charged for fraud and theft of more than R1 million from struggling power utility Eskom in Mpumalanga.

The two accused men, Mtau Dony Mmathinyane, 31, the sole director of Dibuseng Business Enterprise, and Maphoto Manape Sylvane Mokgadi, 55, were arrested by the Hawks Middelburg-based serious commercial crime investigation unit on Wednesday.

-IOL

In other news – Zamani Mbatha (Khaya) allegedly FIRED from Isitha: The Enemy

Well-known South African actor Zamani Mbatha, who joined e.tv’s telenovela Isitha: The Enemy earlier this year as Khaya has reportedly been dropped.

Zamani Mbatha

Entertainment commentator Phil Mphela has announced that talented actor Zamani Mbatha has been let go by popular telenovela Isitha: The Enemy. “Zamani Mbatha fired from Isitha-TheEnemy. Mbatha plays the lead character of Khaya on the etv telenovela. No word on whether the role on the hit show will be recast,” said Mphela. Read More