Defend Truth

HOUSING CHIEF

Cape Town mayco member Malusi Booi suspended after police raid

Cape Town mayco member Malusi Booi suspended after police raid
Cape Town mayoral committee member for human settlements Malusi Booi. (Photo: Gallo Images / Misha Jordaan)

Police raided human settlements mayco member Malusi Booi’s City of Cape Town offices in the Civic Centre and seized gadgets and documents. Mayor Geordin Hill-Lewis has vowed firm action against fraud and corruption in his ranks.

Cape Town mayor Geordin Hill-Lewis has placed mayoral committee member for human settlements Malusi Booi on suspension from the committee with immediate effect. 

This follows a search-and-seizure operation by the police’s Commercial Crimes Unit on Wednesday afternoon. 

‘The SAPS informed me this morning that the investigation is at an early stage, but is potentially serious and relates to alleged fraud and corruption, and that further details cannot be disclosed at this time. As a result, I have suspended Councillor Booi from his position on the Mayoral Committee,” said the mayor. 

James Vos replaces Booi in an acting role.

“I have further assured the SAPS of the City’s full support in the ongoing investigation. The City has a zero-tolerance approach to fraud and corruption and will not hesitate to act in the interests of good governance,” said Hill-Lewis.

Although no one was arrested during the raid, police spokesperson Colonel Andrè Traut confirmed to Daily Maverick that electronic equipment and documents were confiscated. 

“This is part of an investigation into fraud and corruption which saw detectives attached to the Commercial Crimes Investigation Unit execute a search warrant at an office at the Civic Centre, Cape Town, yesterday afternoon,” said Traut. 

He remained tight-lipped when asked about the exact case they are looking into which involves one of the City’s biggest departments in terms of budget. 

Housing projects under siege

Booi’s suspension comes amid increasing extortion by gangs who are hampering housing projects in Cape Town and, while the security budget has been topped up by R15-million to protect those construction sites. 

Hill-Lewis told Western Cape Standing Committee on Human Settlements on 27 January that extortion, unlawful occupation or forceful community disruption of housing in 12 of the City of Cape Town’s housing projects was affecting about 4,500 beneficiaries of state-subsidised housing.

A R1-million reward has been issued for information leading to the arrest of the gunmen who killed City official Wendy Kloppers in Delft on 16 February. 


Visit Daily Maverick’s home page for more news, analysis and investigations


Kloppers was shot at the Symphony Way Housing Project construction site earmarked for 3,300 of the city’s most vulnerable residents. 

The City increased the reward from R100,000 thanks to a donation from a businessman who wishes to remain anonymous.

Link to previous arrests?

Meanwhile, Cape Coloured Congress leader Faidel Adams said believes the police search-and-seizure is a follow-up by the police to the arrest of eight City officials in 2022

They were accused of inflating invoices and irregularly paying service providers for construction work not undertaken, among other illicit activities. Adams believes the City is aware of alleged fraud in excess of R300-million involving the human settlements department. 

“We started with this issue many years ago,” explained Adams, who claimed that attempts to get the attention of various DA mayors had failed.   “ This thing is way bigger than (councillor) Malusi Booi. He (Booi) will in all probability be the scapegoat.” 

Good party councillor Suzette Little said serious concerns about the workings of the human settlements department had been brought to the attention of the mayor, on several occasions and by several opposition parties, through council questions and debates. “In the case of councillor Fadiel Adams, leader of the Cape Coloured Congress (CCC), the mayor arrogantly refused to listen to opposition councillors when concerns were raised around possible fraud and corruption. 

“The office raid is a welcome sign that real progress is being made against alleged ongoing fraud and corruption in the City’s housing department.” 

Booi did not respond immediately to requests for comment. DM

Gallery

Comments - Please in order to comment.

Please peer review 3 community comments before your comment can be posted

X

This article is free to read.

Sign up for free or sign in to continue reading.

Unlike our competitors, we don’t force you to pay to read the news but we do need your email address to make your experience better.


Nearly there! Create a password to finish signing up with us:

Please enter your password or get a sign in link if you’ve forgotten

Open Sesame! Thanks for signing up.

A South African Hero: You

There’s a 99.7% chance that this isn’t for you. Only 0.3% of our readers have responded to this call for action.

Those 0.3% of our readers are our hidden heroes, who are fuelling our work and impacting the lives of every South African in doing so. They’re the people who contribute to keep Daily Maverick free for all, including you.

The equation is quite simple: the more members we have, the more reporting and investigations we can do, and the greater the impact on the country.

Be part of that 0.3%. Be a Maverick. Be a Maverick Insider.

Support Daily Maverick→
Payment options

MavericKids vol 3

How can a child learn to read if they don't have a book?

81% of South African children aged 10 can't read for meaning. You can help by pre-ordering a copy of MavericKids.

For every copy sold we will donate a copy to Gift of The Givers for children in need of reading support.