United Democratic Movement (UDM) President Bantu Holomisa, MP, made an oral submission, this morning, to the Standing Committee on Public Accounts’ (Scopa) on allegations of maladministration and possible corruption at the Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA).

We are pleased and thankful that Scopa has acknowledged the seriousness of the matter and have agreed to investigate the allegations.

The UDM’s submission centred around:
• Alleged mismanagement and maladministration of three loans, totalling hundreds of millions of Rands, which the DBSA had allegedly extended to three entities that form part of Cranbrook Property Projects.
• The Poseidon Water Project which the DBSA allegedly supported to the tune of R350 million and the alleged involvement of politically exposed persons in the shareholder structure of that company.
• The alleged victimisation of certain board members, in particular Ms Bulelwa Ndamase who reportedly questioned the Cranbrook deal and her subsequent release as a non-executive director.
• The very strange circumstances under which the new DBSA board was selected, appointed and announced.
• The suitability of Mr Enoch Godongwana as DBSA board chairperson and the power he wields at the DBSA.

In particular we wish to draw the media’s attention to two letters that were purportedly sent to Ms Ndamase by Finance Minister Tito Mboweni. The first is a fairly curt and unreferenced letter, dated 30 September 2020 (date typed), informing Ms Ndamase of the expiry of her term of service as a non-executive director. She was given no reasons for not extending her period of service after her having served only one term.

The second letter, now with the traditional detailed reference, dated 11 November 2020 (date written in pen) is addressed to Ms Ndamase using the DBSA’s postal address. Why would the minister use the DBSA postal address if he clearly is aware that she is no longer associated with the DBSA since 30 September 2020?

Given the allegations, which are expounded on in the full submission, the UDM wonders whose “signature” really is at the bottom of that 30 September letter… Minister Mboweni’s or DBSA board chairperson Enoch Godongwana’s? Who is the boss here?

The UDM commits itself to cooperate with Scopa’s investigation and look forward to the truth of the state of affairs at the DBSA being revealed.

Issued by:
Mr Bantu Holomisa, MP
UDM President