Public Protector to Investigate Dodgy Land Deals

Anthony Benadie

DA Mpumalanga Leader

In response to a complaint submitted by the DA, the Public Protector has agreed to investigate the circumstances surrounding the land deal between the Msukaligwa municipality, Bongiveli CC and the Department of Human Settlements (DHS). However, based on new information that has come to light, the DA will request that the investigation be expanded to include all Bongiveli’s land deals with government and local municipalities.

This is in response to a complaint lodged in September 2011, after the DA revealed that Bongiveli made a profit of over R24,5 million for acting as intermediary. However, it has subsequently come to light that Bongiveli has been involved in a number of land deals, most notably in Malalane, where a 70- hectare tract of land was bought by Misty Sea Trading (pty) Ltd for R5,8 million, then sold to Bongiveli for R41 million, who then resold it to DHS for R50 million.

In addition, the DA recently submitted formal written questions to the MEC for Human Settlements, Mr Siphosezwe Masango about land acquired by the department and who it acquired the land from. Both of Bongiveli’s questionable ldeals appeared on the list, along with others such as Pacific Breeze Trading, Lezmin 1650 CC and the now defunct Mpumalanga Housing Finance Company.

In the light of a number of media reports on questionable land deals in the province, as well as Bongiveli’s involvement in these two, the DA will now write to the Public Protector, Advocate Thuli Madonsela and ask her to expand the current Bongiveli/Msukaligwa/DHS investigation to include the Malalane deal, and any others not disclosed by DHS.

In conclusion, the DA will keep a close eye on reports of questionable land deals, and based on the information at hand, will submit further complaints to the Public Protector for investigation.

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