GOOD asks Hawks to investigate dodgy DA land sale in Swartland

GOOD press statement by Councillor Jeremey Papier,
GOOD: Swartland Municipality

09 March 2022

Note to editor: please see corrected version of statement issued earlier this morning.

The GOOD party has formally requested the Hawks to conduct an investigation into a fraudulent and corrupt land transaction which defrauded the residents and ratepayers of the DA-run Swartland Municipality.

This comes after both Swartland Council Speaker, Michael Rangasamy, and Western Cape MEC, Anton Bredell, failed to investigate the dodgy sale of 6 823 square meters of municipal land situated in Malmesbury to the ACVV, which is a social services non-profit entity.

This despite being furnished with the full dossier of the suspicious transaction on 29 January 2022. The dossier of evidence has now been handed to the Hawks who have confirmed that they will investigate.

The dossier of evidence suggests that the former Mayor of Swartland, Tijmen van Essen, who is now a Member of the Mayoral Committee (MMC), presided over meetings where the sale of the land at a discounted sales price to the ACVV was approved. This while his wife, Doedtje Van Essen, was the Chairperson of the ACVV in Malmesbury. The land was always intended to be sold on, by the ACVV, to a private company and the ACVV allegedly acted as a front for the Company.

At the next sitting of Council, we will also move a motion asking council to establish its own independent forensic investigation to get to the bottom of this land sale which appears to have been concluded for the express purpose of unduly benefitting a close associate of the former Mayor’s wife.

It is of equal concern that wherever corruption abounds, MEC Bredell seems to not be far behind.

MEC Bredell has had multiple adverse findings against him by the Public Protector related to undue political interference in various municipalities in the Western Cape. Most recently MEC Bredell has failed to remove George Councillor Cronje after a Public Protector report found that a R350 million investment was concluded to benefit his son.

This is the sort of delinquency we have come to expect from MEC Bredell. Everything he touches seems to be tarnished.

It has therefore become necessary that we approach the Hawks and Council to investigate this land alienation because these DA administrations lack the political will to deal with corruption despite claiming to have a zero-tolerance approach to corruption.

Media enquiries:

Jeremy Papier, GOOD: Swartland Municipality Councillor
Cell: 0832920435

Brett Herron, GOOD: Secretary-General & Member of Parliament
Cell: 0825183264

Samkelo Mgobozi, GOOD: Media Manager
Cell: 0792315977 (Whatsapp)/0829684021 (calls)