Cellphone records show no calls made between Trollip, bribe accuser
PORT ELIZABETH - The woman accused of defaming Nelson Mandela Bay Mayor Athol Trollip, by claiming he had offered her a bribe during the 2016 local government elections, told the Port Elizabeth Magistrate's Court on Thursday that the mayor met her in the township of Motherwell and offered her cash to testify in an internal matter within the Democratic Alliance (DA).
Former DA activist Nontuthuzelo Jack, 47, who is facing a charge of crimen injuria, is accused of defaming Trollip by claiming he offered her a bribe to “dig up dirt” on former DA provincial chairperson Veliswa Mvenya.
Her claims were published in a local newspaper in the run-up to the municipal elections in 2016.
In giving evidence on Thursday, Jack claimed that Trollip called her on the morning of March 20, 2016, to meet near the Motherwell Police Station.
She said when she got into his navy blue vehicle he had offered her R3,000 in money bags and placed it on the dashboard. Jack claimed that Trollip wanted her to testify in an internal party matter because "this of him losing cases was not favourable".
She claimed that she refused, swore him and got out of the vehicle crying.
"I got out of the car and said that I have no time for his dirty things and I will not have blood on my hands," Jack said.
She also testified that she had previously written to Trollip who was the DA's Provincial Leader at the time, stating she was unhappy with Mvenya's candidacy.
"I wrote to him and he said he would fire [Mvenya and two others] because he could see they were after him."
Jack then said she chose not to report the bribery incident because a letter would have had to be addressed to Trollip as the Provincial Leader, and because of his status it would have been a "waste of time".
She further claimed that in her affidavit made to DA Federal Executive Chairperson James Selfe, there were several mistakes, such as the date the alleged bribe took place.
"[Selfe] said that he would come back to me and call Trollip so that we could all meet but that never happened," said Jack.
Under cross examination, the State put it to Jack that cell phone records showed that no calls were made between Trollip and Jack on the day she alleged a bribe took place.
But Jack was adamant that Trollip called her three times on the morning of the alleged bribe.
The State said it was "weird" because the cell phone records showed that Jack had received no calls before 7am that morning and only after 8am with none of the calls emanating from Trollip's cell phone number.
In response Jack said she disputed the correctness of the cell phone records and then claimed Trollip did not call her using his own number.
The case was postponed until August 13 when the defence will call its last witness.