More woes for embattled DA Limpopo leader Jacques Smalle
Pretoria – More allegations have surfaced against embattled DA Limpopo leader Jacques Smalle, with some party members accusing him of turning a blind eye to irregularities and protecting a member and his staunch supporter from internal prosecution.
Smalle allegedly turned a blind eye to the appointment of former DA Polokwane councillor and current MP Lindy Wilson to the National Assembly, despite her history of allegedly abusing party funds.
The Limpopo politician oversaw the election of MPs in Parliament after the 2019 national elections.
In a leaked document seen by the Pretoria News and presented by senior DA member Anna Harris-Stone to the chairperson of the interview panel, Rory Gailey, objecting to Wilson’s appointment, the party’s internal audit report shows the discrepancies of funds paid into her account for the 2018 Ward 9 Bela-Bela bi-elections. One section of the document, dated 2018/07/11, shows that Wilson spent R15 840 for the Bela-Bela bi-elections day expenses but did not outline in the financial report how that money was spent.
The document also contained sworn affidavits from three DA members confirming Wilson’s involvement in contravening the Municipal Structures Act, where Smalle and Wilson are accused of lying about an address of an elected councillor in an attempt to make him a councillor in Polokwane.
In the affidavits, a former DA councillor in Limpopo, Frederick Pohl; former DA provincial chairperson Langa Bodlani; and former DA Limpopo managing director Nthabiseng Lerotholi highlight Wilson’s history of alleged financial abuse of party funds.
Pohl wrote in the affidavit: “In June 2014 a teleconference meeting of the provincial executive committee was held to approve candidates for the August by-elections. Mr Roelof Lourens was presented as a councillor from Burgersfort in Tubatse municipality but to stand in wards 20 and 23 in Polokwane.
“I specifically asked if Mr Lourens was registered and lives in Polokwane and this was confirmed by Mr Jacques Smalle and Mrs Lindy Wilson, stating that he had signed a lease agreement for a place to live in Polokwane, but… the address he had given was not that of Mr Lourens but that of Mrs Lindy Wilson.
“This address was given to Mr Lourens to register as a voter in Polokwane to enable him to stand as a candidate for the Polokwane wards. This was confirmed by Nthabiseng Lerotholi. She even warned of the possibility of fraud of the Municipality Electoral Act.”
Pohl added in his statement Lourens had still been living in Burgersfort and on occasions used Smalle’s house at the parliamentary village in Polokwane and only moved to his own place after becoming a councillor.
Smalle said: “I don’t appoint anyone. We have structures in the party for that. Any action the party takes against any colleague follows due process. In Ms Wilson’s case no information was withheld.”
Wilson said: “These were all internal matters and all have been concluded with no charges laid against me.”