AfriForum to lay criminal charges against Fikile Mbalula over Dubai trip

Fikile Mbalula is being taken to court by AfriForum over his 2016 family holiday to Dubai. 
Image: IHSAAN HAFFEJEE

Lobby group AfriForum intends to lay criminal charges against transport minister Fikile Mbalula on Tuesday in connection with his family holiday to Dubai in 2016, which possibly constituted a conflict of interest.

Mbalula was sports minister when public protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane found that he violated the constitution and the executive ethics code as the trip was paid for by Sedgars Sports.

Mkhwebane revealed that Mbalula went to Dubai without first paying for the trip and seemingly had no idea how much it would cost. She said this was “very irresponsible of Mbalula as he could not determine whether he could afford the excursion”.

Sedgars denied any wrongdoing.

Mbalula insisted that he funded the holiday himself. The minister claimed he obtained a loan from Sedgars Sports to help him pay for the trip, which cost over R684,000.

Mkhwebane ordered the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) to investigate whether the funds were the proceeds of money laundering.

At the time, AfriForum said it would monitor the process and prosecute if the NPA failed to do its job.

As a result of this failure to prosecute, AfriForum said it would be laying criminal charges against Mbalula on Tuesday in a private prosecution.

Advocate Gerrie Nel will lead their team.

Attempts to reach AfriForum and Mbalula for further comments were unsuccessful.

BY: MIRANDA RAAFF

SOURCE: TMG DIGITAL

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