Former Eastern Rugby Province president Cheeky Watson has been arrested. Photo: Richard Huggard/Gallo Images

FORMER Eastern Province Rugby Union president Cheeky Watson was arrested along with three other accused on Friday morning on charges of money laundering and fraud with regards to an amount of around R12 million.

The controversial Watson resigned as the president of the EP Rugby Union (EPRU) late last month after the SA Rugby Union (Saru) announced that elections would be held soon for a new executive committee at the troubled Port Elizabeth-based EPRU, which was being administered by Saru over the last few months.

The SABC reported on Friday that Watson and three other accused – Nadia Gerwel, Andrea Wessels and Mandisa Mkaza – presented themselves at the Mount Road Police Station on Friday morning and were arrested.

The HeraldLive website states that the matter is in connection with “circumventing the procurement process between the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality, National Treasury and Access Management”.

It’s alleged that the money was channelled through Access Management, who were the operators of the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium in Port Elizabeth, where the Eastern Province provincial team and the Southern Kings Super Rugby franchise play their matches.

Watson and his co-accused are facing 43 charges, and were released on R2 000 bail each in the Port Elizabeth Magistrate’s Court on Friday morning.

The matter was postponed to May 3.

Independent Media