7 February 2018

South Africa: Mike Mabuyakhulu Should Be Given a Chance to Present His Case - KZN ANC

The ANC in KwaZulu-Natal says its provincial interim committee convener Mike Mabuyakhulu, who is accused of fraud and corruption, should be given a chance to present his case before a court of law.

"As the ANC, we wish to express our profound respect of the rule for the law and support all efforts towards fighting corruption," the party said on Wednesday.

The party said the allegations should be "treated in the fairest of manners".

Mabuyakhulu, the former MEC for economic development and tourism, appeared in the Durban Commercial Crimes Court on Wednesday, together with three other accused.

He is accused of accepting money while he was MEC, after a R28m North Sea Jazz Festival was cancelled in 2012.

READ: We will investigate without fear or favour - Hawks on Mabuyakhulu arrest

However, the ANC said his rights needed to be "fully observed".

"The ANC further wants to reiterate the principle of presumption of innocence until proven otherwise.

"The presumption of innocence is part of fundamental rights which underpin the Constitution of our country and the functioning of our judicial system."

News24 reported earlier on Wednesday that the court heard that companies headed by Mabuyakhulu's co-accused were paid, despite the festival being cancelled. The formal charges he faces include fraud, corruption, theft and money laundering.

There have been allegations of political interference since Mabuyakhulu was appointed to lead the provincial task team.

He was kicked out of provincial government in 2016 when the ANC in KwaZulu-Natal - led by then chairperson Sihle Zikalala - fired supporters of the Senzo Mchunu faction.


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