ANC secretary-general and former Free State premier Ace Magashule is expected to hand himself to the police as the Hawks has confirmed that warrants of arrest was issued to him over his alleged role in the Free State’s R255-million asbestos audit contract.
Scorpio have revealed that a warrant of arrest has been issued for Magashule and that he will face several corruption-related charges in connection with one of the more contentious contracts the Free State provincial government awarded during his time as premier.
A joint venture between businessman Edwin Sodi’s Blackhead Consulting and the late Igo Mpambani’s Diamond Hill Trading 74 clinched the lucrative asbestos audit contract from the Free State’s department of human settlements (FSHS) in 2014. Sodi and other businesspeople linked to the deal have already been arrested and charged, along with several former government officials.
Scorpio understands that Magashule will make his first appearance in the Bloemfontein High Court on Friday and that he has been given an opportunity to voluntarily present himself to the authorities.
“We have learnt that he faces multiple counts of alleged transgressions provided for in the Prevention and Combating of Corrupt Activities Act (Precca), among other corruption-related legislation” said Scorpio spokesperson
It is understood that some of these charges relate to payments made to certain third parties with the proceeds of the contract, allegedly on Magashule’s instruction. Magashule’s alleged role in the asbestos saga was first exposed in this reporter’s book, Gangster State.
It was revealed that Magashule’s then PA, Moroadi Cholota, had instructed Mpambani to make payments to third parties and that this was seemingly done on behalf of her former boss.
In August 2015, Mpambani used some of the proceeds of the asbestos contract to settle the student fees for the daughter of then acting high court judge Refiloe Mokoena who had been studying at a college in the United States.