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A warrant of arrest has been issued for the wife of MEC Meshack Radebe for failing to appear in court to explain her alleged defaulting on payments towards a soft drinks bill of almost R200 000.
Legal action has been brought against Thembisile Rosslyn Radebe by Amalgamated Beverage Industries (ABI) after she failed to pay the company for soft drinks she had bought for the Cedara Agricultural College canteen, which she had run.
Radebe, whose husband is the MEC for agriculture, environmental affairs and rural development, had racked up a bill of R197 710.10.
Last year, Durban High Court judge Fikile Mokgohloa granted an order directing Radebe to pay off the debt in weekly instalments of R2 500, backdated from March 18, 2010, as well as interest and costs.
The matter was then transferred to the Pietermaritzburg Magistrate’s Court for a financial inquiry, but when Radebe failed to appear in court on August 8, a warrant was issued.
Representing ABI, Vikesh Bhoola of Chapman Dyer Incorporated, said Radebe had made a few payments and then stopped.
Since the order was granted she had paid back about R60 000, and her last payment was for R5 000 in July this year, Bhoola said.
He said the drinks were purchased for Cedara Agricultural College, one of two agricultural colleges falling under the control of the MEC’s department, which had a “running account” with ABI.
The MEC refused to be drawn into the matter, declining comment this week.
But the department’s spokesman, Jeffrey Zikhali, said Radebe had taken charge of the canteen four years before her husband’s appointment.
Opposition parties, however, were unhappy with the link between Radebe’s canteen (the college) and her husband’s portfolio. - Daily News