SABRINA DEAN – The state is expected to finalize its case against Health MEC Benny Malakoane and five other accused on trial in the Odendaalsrus Regional Court on charges relating to the appointment of a dodgy sewerage contractor tomorrow.
National Prosecuting Authority Free State spokesperson Phaladi Shuping says three witnesses took the stand today. They are Enock Msibi from the Construction Industry Development Board, Terrence Burger, representing a company that did not get the bid to conduct work on the sewage system, and Jan Greyling, an engineer from the Matjhabeng Municipality.
He says state prosecutor Antoinette Ferreira is expected to finalize the case tomorrow.
The charges, dating back to 2004, include collusion and fruitless and wasteful expenditure. They also relate to pollution of water resources with raw sewage having been deposited into the Losdoringspruit water resource.
Malakoane is joined in the dock by Maria Shabangu, Sello Naniso, Johannes Motseki, Vusi Adonis and Lindiwe Moorosi. Malakoane, Moorosi and Motseki were all previous municipal managers at the Matjhabeng Local Municipality, either in permanent or acting capacity.
The six are accused of appointing a contractor to conduct work on the sewerage system despite written warnings from engineers that the specific contractor would not be up to the job.