Tsakane resident Gunikaya Dwenga has accused councillor Morris Chauke of selling him a stand in Tsakane for a cumulative R15 800 in 2008, with Dwenga saying it was “money down the drain” as he did not receive the stand.
A “letter of acceptance” document seen by The Star, which has the official Ekurhuleni letterhead on it, details the breakdown of payments for the stand and has what looks like Chauke’s signature on it.
This is gleaned from an official council document The Star has seen which Chauke signed in May. It has the same signature as the acceptance letter.
According to Dwenga, R14000 was paid for the land and R1800 was for “legal fees”.
The acceptance letter is dated March 1997, which an insider at the city’s housing department said was “stupid” as Ekurhuleni became a metro only in 2000.
Speaking of what he called his ordeal, Dwenga said he responded to an advertisement in a local newspaper calling for people to purchase stands in Tsakane.
After he called the number listed in the advert, Dwenga added, Chauke allegedly arranged for them to meet.
Dwenga said he went to the meeting with his wife and his maternal aunt, and said they were asked to choose from one of three available stands.
“After I had identified the stand I wanted to buy, we went back to Chauke’s office to pay the R14000 for the stand, and R1800 in legal fees for the stand to be transferred into my name. I paid the full amount in cash,” Dwenga said.
A letter signed by Anna Mnguni - the former councillor where the stand in question is located, and who The Star understands is Chauke’s wife - asks Tsakane’s Eskom office to connect the stand with electricity and lists him as a resident in her former ward.
The letter was dated January 2009.
Dwenga said he found out he had been duped after going to the deeds office to request a title deed to access his provident funds from work to build a home on the stand.
This was after he had a building plan approved by the council to build on the stand - the approval of which was seen by The Star.
The Star visited the stand in question twice, and found a house for sale on it. A man claiming to be the estate agent, said the selling price was R520000.
Chauke is the same person who was accused by Siphiwe Shongwe of Tsakane for selling her RDP house without her knowledge in reports The Star ran in August. Shongwe received a new home from the provincial government following the reports.
Speaking for Ekurhuleni, Chauke and Mnguni, city spokesperson Themba Gadebe confirmed the stand didn’t belong to Dwenga.
However, DA council leader Phillip de Lange said the official opposition would be writing to the Speaker for Chauke to be referred to the committee he heads over numerous allegations of housing corruption.
Dwenga and his family currently live in a leased home.