Home South African Fraud probes add to Cope’s woes

Fraud probes add to Cope’s woes

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Drama is unfolding once more within the Congress of the People as the police investigate several incidents of alleged fraud in the party.

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DRAMA is unfolding once more within the Congress of the People (Cope) as police investigate several incidents of alleged fraud in the party.

The latest case of alleged fraud involves a letter that has been circulated among politicians and journalists. The letter said the Johannesburg Speaker of Council, Colleen Makhubele, had been expelled from the party and was being investigated for bringing it into disrepute in connection with allegedly faking party leader Mosiuoa Lekota’s signature.

The case comes as opposition parties in Tshwane also asked law enforcement to investigate former Tshwane mayor Murunwa Makwarela for allegedly faking a court document meant to clear him of insolvency.

The second case of fraud appeared when a Cope councillor gave the Electoral Commission of SA (IEC) a wrong ID number while being vetted for the position of mayoral candidate. It later appeared that the same candidate had a criminal record.

The Star has seen a letter from Cope in Gauteng to the IEC expressing its displeasure over the fake letter.

“We hereby confirm the letter is fraudulent. The president of Cope has no knowledge of the letter and had neither sanctioned nor authorised its contents,” the letter said.

Cope in Gauteng had also sent a media statement distancing itself from the initial letter claiming Makhubele was no longer a member of Cope.

“The Cope president and the Cope Gauteng province hereby confirm that the letter is fraudulent. The president of Cope has no knowledge of the letter and had neither sanctioned nor authorised its content to withdraw Cllr Colleen Makhubele as a councillor in the City of Johannesburg and the purported termination of her membership in Cope and representation in IEC,” the statement said.

Makhubele said she would communicate her position to The Star and said she was still a member of Cope.

It appears that the Joburg Speaker was a target in factional fights within Cope. For years Cope has slowly lost support because of factions within the party. Last year matters became worse when party members engaged in a physical fight on live television.

The Star understands that Lekota has opened a case of fraud at the Midrand police station.

The Star requested an interview with Cope national spokesperson Dennis Bloem, but there hasn’t been a positive response concerning this.

– THE STAR

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