I will never be convicted for Limpopo tender corruption scandal – Malema
Johannesburg - EFF leader Julius Malema has expressed confidence he will never be successfully convicted for the Limpopo tender corruption scandal which saw him being charged eight years ago.
Malema was hosting a public question session with a group of journalists which he convened to field questions on a variety of controversies surrounding him and the party.
These included the 2009 R52 million tender corruption scandal involving the Limpopo Transport Department and On Point Engineering, which is linked to Malema and in which his Ratanang Family Trust was a shareholder.
Malema said his requests for his case to be separated from other accused people in the saga and for him to be put on trial without delay had been rejected by the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) because it had no evidence of criminal activities by him.
The matter was subsequently struck off the roll in 2015 and then resuscitated by the current National Director of Public Prosecutions (NDPP), Shamila Batohi, without Malema being among those who are charged.
“She wouldn’t charge me. She will not charge me. Even in the future she can’t charge me. Even if she charges me, she will not succeed because I am not involved in those things,” he said.
While Malema admitted he benefited from the proceeds of the tender, he dismissed claims the tender corruption collapsed the provincial government.
“Limpopo had a budget of R47 billion and On-Point got a tender of R50 million, wrongly or rightfully. I don’t want to deal with that. How can a tender of R50 million collapse a budget of R47 million?
"You cannot have a tender of R50 million collapse a province of a budget of R47 billion. The intention has always been to smear me, to delegitimise me so that I do not add my voice in the anti-corruption project of the country” Malema asked.
He maintained that all those who held political office, including former premier Cassel Mathale and his MECs, were never charged for presiding over the scandalous tender.
“All those people who presided over that government are today ministers and deputy ministers in the 'clean government'. The dark cloud of having collapsed a government of Limpopo remains with me who has never been in government,” he said.
Malema also fielded questions about the allegations that he and his deputy, Floyd Shivambu had benefited from the looting of the VBS Bank, which he also disputed.