Law enforcement authorities have obtained a preservation order preventing former National Lotteries Commission (NLC) chairperson Alfred Nevhutanda and others from using properties and luxury vehicles bought with money siphoned from the lottery fund.
The order follows a series of investigations by the Special Investigating Unit (SIU) that uncovered fraud and corruption valued at approximately R344 million. The probes found that board members, senior employees, their family members and friends enriched themselves with NLC grants allocated for projects to assist in mostly impoverished communities.
The Pretoria High Court issued the order after the Asset Forfeiture Unit (AFU) of the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) and the SIU approached it.
The order allows these agencies to preserve four properties in Polokwane and Louis Trichardt, Limpopo Province, and three luxury vehicles worth approximately R14 million.
SIU spokesperson Kaizer Kganyago said the luxury vehicles include a Rolls-Royce Phantom, BMW G30 520d Series Sedan, and BMW 7 Series Sedan M760Li xDrive.
“The BMW 5 was bought in July 2017 for R995 000. A total of R595 000 stolen NLC funds was transferred to BMW Finance to settle the outstanding balance on the vehicle. The stolen NLC funds originated from grant funding of R23 720 000 paid by the NLC to Nunnovation NPO for promoting a healthy lifestyle and constructing a gymnasium. The BMW was registered in the name of Fhulufhelo Promise Kharivhe.
“The BMW 7 Series was purchased in September 2017 for R2.8 million. A total of R1 million stolen NLC funds was paid toward the BMW as a deposit. The BMW was registered in the name of Meshack Makhubela, the son-in-law of Nevhutanda. The Rolls-Royce was purchased in August 2016 by Nevhuthanda for R6.3 million. Over R4.5 million of stolen NLC funds was transferred to the dealership in five payments towards the purchase price of the Rolls-Royce,” said Kganyago.
Kganyago said the properties and vehicles are preserved pending an application for a forfeiture order.
Registered owners are interdicted from dealing in any manner with the frozen properties, he said.
“The preservation order stems from serious maladministration and corruption at the NLC, uncovered by the SIU. All the properties mentioned above represent the proceeds of unlawful activity as provided for in the Prevention of Organised Crime Act,” Kganyago said.
“Once forfeited, the property will be sold on public auction, and the NLC compensated for their losses. This preservation is part of implementing the Anti-Corruption Strategy, which sees law enforcement agencies coming together to eradicate corruption in South Africa.”