Kebble trust targets ex-Island prisoner

By Fatima Schroeder Time of article published Jul 2, 2008

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Former Rivonia trialist and Robben Islander Andrew Mlangeni has become the latest target of the trustees of the insolvent estate of former mining magnate Brett Kebble, who was killed in 2005.

The MP, who spent 26 years on Robben Island with former president Nelson Mandela, allegedly received R360 000 from Kebble between October 15, 2003, and September 4, 2004 .

The trustees want the money returned and have instituted an action against Mlangeni in the Cape High Court.

The court papers do not specify what the R360 000 was for.

In August 2004, Mlangeni made headlines when he disclosed to Parliament that Kebble, whom he described as a friend, had given him a R1,6-million house in Newlands and a R320 000 Mercedes-Benz.

At the time he received these, he was the non-executive chairperson of diamond mining company Matodzi Resources.

In Parliament's register of members' interests, he disclosed that he had received a "gift" of a house and motor vehicle from Kebble, who was acting on behalf of Matodzi Resources.

He later said the house and car were from Matodzi Resources, not Kebble himself.

In the court action however, trustees Anna Venter, Rainotes Nduna and Johannes Klopper allege that Kebble himself paid the R360 000 to Mlangeni.

They say that after Kebble's estate was sequestrated last June, they investigated his financial affairs and studied his records. A forensic audit was also conducted.

They instituted the action and summons was served on Mlangeni on April 25 this year.

In the court papers they say that Kebble had paid Mlangeni R181 289 on October 15, 2003, as well as R150 000 on December 18 that year. A further payment of R29 337 was made to Mlangeni on September 4, 2004.

This payment was made after Mlangeni had disclosed the house and car to Parliament.

The trustees said in the papers that the payments were made when Kebble was technically bankrupt as his liabilities exceeded his assets. The amounts paid to Mlangeni were therefore liable to be set aside under the Insolvency Act, they said.

The trustees said that Mlangeni had been "unjustly enriched" and asked the court to order that he repay the money.

On Tuesday, the trustees applied for summary judgment against Mlangeni.

In an affidavit forming part of the summary judgment application, Klopper said he believed Mlangeni did not have a bona fide defence and asked the court to order him to repay the amount.

The application came before Judge Siraj Desai yesterday morning but was postponed indefinitely.

Mlangeni has filed a notice indicating that he would defend the action.

Yesterday's case comes a month after the trustees lodged a similar application against former ANC chief whip Tony Yengeni for R250 000 Kebble had paid him between May 2003 and December 2004.

The trustees have also instituted actions against senior ANC members and business journalist David Gleason, also for allegedly receiving money from Kebble.

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