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Company previously flagged over ‘28s gang’ suspicions still building houses for Western Cape government

Company previously flagged over ‘28s gang’ suspicions still building houses for Western Cape government
This photograph taken at a Valhalla Park housing project, was posted to the Facebook page of Cape Town Human Settlements Mayco member Malusi Booi in August 2021. The logo shown is that of Glomix House Brokers. The company's director is Nicole Johnson, whose husband is suspected 28s gang boss Ralph Stanfield. (Photo: Supplied)

Four years ago, news emerged that a Cape Town company with suspected links to the 28s gang was awarded a housing tender in an area where thugs were threatening contractors. Daily Maverick has established that the provincial Department of Human Settlements is still doing business with the company.

It was a company previously awarded a housing tender in Cape Town, which residents pointed to as problematic because of its suspected gang links. But it is still doing business with the Western Cape’s Human Settlements department.

Daily Maverick has established that the director of Glomix House Brokers is Nicole Johnson, wife of suspected 28s gang boss Ralph Stanfield. The company has intermittently, for more than a decade, been involved in housing projects in Cape Town worth millions of rands.

It still is, and possibly will be for at least another year, implying that City and provincial government authorities are satisfied with the arrangement.

Glomix, which the Western Cape government previously said was found to be an above-board business, is building 204 houses in the Cape Town neighbourhood of Valhalla Park, where residents previously complained about its operations relating to a tender.

Neither Johnson nor Stanfield have been convicted in relation to gangsterism.

It just so happens though that in a Western Cape High Court judgment from 2020, about a double murder that happened there, it was alleged that “the Stanfield family… control the 28s in the Valhalla Park area”. (While Johnson is not mentioned in the judgment, Stanfield is.) 

Valhalla Park has also been the scene of “construction mafia” types of crimes.

Construction mafia

Such crimes include gangsters who target housing and construction projects around the city, extorting contractors, sometimes through violence and intimidation.

In a presentation about housing extortion to Parliament in January, the City of Cape Town flagged Valhalla Park and said there had been “threats and violence on contractor’s staff” there in 2017 that resulted in a project’s suspension.

New threats were made in January.

Another volatile area in Cape Town in terms of construction violence is Delft where City of Cape Town official Wendy Kloppers was murdered in a shooting on 16 February.

To address the growing problem, the city added R15-million to its security budget to bolster the protection of construction sites.

City of Cape Town housing presentation 

This housing saga is playing out in the Western Cape, which is known as South Africa’s gangsterism capital, and which is the focus of a high court judgment from October 2022 that said evidence points to 28s gangsters having infiltrated the province’s police management.

Read more in Daily Maverick:28s gang ‘capture’ top Western Cape cops, prosecutors’ lives at risk – judge sounds corruption alarm

Western Cape Premier Alan Winde had ordered the province’s police ombudsman to investigate those 28s gangsterism allegations.

Questions around suspension of Malusi Booi

City of Cape Town Mayoral Committee Member for Human Settlements Malusi Booi. (Photo: Gallo Images / Misha Jordaan)

Meanwhile, on Thursday 16 March, in another housing issue that may be unrelated to 28s gang claims and suspicions, the city of Cape Town’s mayoral committee member for human settlements Malusi Booi was suspended from the committee.

This followed a police raid at his offices the day before.

The search related to a fraud and corruption investigation, the finer details of which are not yet clear, and involved electronic equipment and documents being confiscated.

Booi, given his work, should know about Glomix and the situation in Valhalla Park.

Daily Maverick has established that in terms of Glomix, Johnson is still an active director and that Stanfield resigned from being a “representative trustee” back in 2017. 

Gun licence case and shootings

Both Johnson and Stanfield were accused in a criminal case involving allegations that police officers helped create firearm licences for suspects who were not entitled to such documentation.

They were initially arrested in this case back in 2014. At one stage the case was withdrawn, then reinstated. It is yet to conclude. This means that Glomix was awarded housing tenders in the WC after their 2014 arrests.

Previously Johnson and Stanfield unsuccessfully tried to have the prosecution against them suspended. Stanfield was wounded in a shooting in Johannesburg back in 2017.

Fast-forward to Monday, 13 March 2023, when a man who is reportedly a cousin named Simon Stanfield, was murdered in a shooting near Blikkiesdorp in Cape Town.

Police spokesperson Joseph Swartbooi told Daily Maverick the motive for the killing was yet to be established.

Glomix automated responses

On 16 March 2023 Daily Maverick sent an email and WhatsApp message to contact details listed for Glomix, requesting a response relating to housing tenders the company has been awarded, and to suspicions that may arise relating to those tenders since Booi’s suspension.

What appeared to be an automated reply on the WhatsApp business account said: “Thank you for contacting the number for Nicole Johnson! She will get back to you within 24 hours. For urgent response please send an email. Kind regards.”

Another message to Daily Maverick was deleted before being read on Friday morning.

No further response had been received by the time of publication.

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

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The company publicly cropped up more than a decade ago in relation to housing in Cape Town.

Back in 2012, Property24 reported: “Nedbank Corporate Property Finance Affordable Housing is funding the Cape Town-based Golden Oaks development to the value of almost R20-million…

“The facility granted to Glomix House Brokers CC is to be used for the development of 91 affordable sectional title units popularly known as Golden Oaks, situated in Blue Downs, Kuils River, in Cape Town.”

The Property24 article referred to a Glomix representative who Daily Maverick has established had resigned as a member of the company back in 2013. 

R43m tender and complaints

In March 2019, there was some controversy surrounding the company when it was reported that Glomix had a tender to build 30 houses as part of a housing project in Valhalla Park.

Valued at roughly R43-million, the Valhalla Park project started in February 2016 and was meant to wrap up in September the following year, but violence in the area caused delays.

In an open letter, residents reportedly claimed that 28s gangsters robbed the project’s previous contractor, which was also forced to pay over so-called “protection fees” – money to ensure they would not be attacked.

Information that surfaced in Parliament in 2018 tallied with that version of events.

Parliament heard that there had been “gang and criminal-related violence towards the contractor and community in Valhalla Park.”

The City of Cape Town, Parliament also heard, said “that threats were made by gangs as they sought payments from contractors, and this put the contractors’ and their families’ lives at risk”.

Valhalla Park and ‘above board’ projects

Issues surrounding Glomix and Valhalla Park extend to Booi, his remit and his City and provincial government housing colleagues.

At the time in 2019, it was reported that Glomix was awarded a Valhalla Park housing tender.

It appeared that the provincial government provided contractors to the City. 

Booi was quoted as saying: “The City of Cape Town was not aware of these allegations [relating to gangs] until the recent media enquiries.

“The City has subsequently brought these allegations to the Western Cape Government’s (WCG) attention as the contractors were provided from the WCG’s Human Settlement Department’s framework agreement for small and medium contractors.”

(Later, in August 2021, photographs of a Valhalla Park housing project posted to Booi’s Facebook page suggested that Johnson was present at the site with him.)

Photograph, taken at a Valhalla Park housing project, was posted to the Facebook page of Cape Town human settlements mayco member Malusi Booi, in August 2021. The woman in the centre is Nicole Johnson, whose husband is suspected 28s gang boss Ralph Stanfield. Photo: Supplied

According to Eyewitness News, the province’s mayoral committee member for housing at the time, Bonginkosi Madikizela, said processes had been properly followed in awarding the tender.

Madikizela was quoted as saying: “If these people are known to be gangs or involved with gangs, then why are they still roaming in the streets? 

“We cannot be made a scapegoat as the Department of Human Settlements if these people are running a legitimate company that has registered with [the South African Revenue Service] and followed due processes.”

Rewarding intimidation? 

Other political parties lashed out over the situation.

ANC Western Cape secretary at the time Faiez Jacobs reportedly said: “We are shocked and outraged that the City of Cape Town has awarded a multi-million rand contract to the wife of gang leader, Ralph Stanfield, to build houses in Valhalla Park.”

The Good party’s Brett Herron said: “Good movement takes a particularly dim view of this matter as it appears to be a case of the provincial government rewarding intimidation and extortion.”

Despite the controversy, it seems that WCG deemed working with Glomix as above board.

Still in the mix

On Thursday, 16 March Ntobeko Mbingeleli, spokesperson for infrastructure MEC Tertuis Simmers, acknowledged that Glomix was still involved in housing work and would be for a while.

The situation seemed to be a repeat of what emerged in 2019, with the City asking the province’s Human Settlements department to provide it with contractors.

“In 2021 the Department of Human Settlements was asked by the City of Cape Town to do the procurement for six city projects on behalf of the City of Cape Town,” Mbingeleli told Daily Maverick.

“For the Valhalla Park project, Glomix was appointed through a competitive bidding process to build 204 houses, which comprises a portion of the total 777 housing units. To date, Glomix has completed the first 40 houses and the remaining 164 houses are to be completed by March 2024.”

R5m in ‘professional fees’

Daily Maverick has also established that Glomix is twice mentioned in the WCG’s Department of Human Settlement’s 2021/2022 annual report.

Under a table headed “consultant appointments using appropriated funds”, Glomix House Brokers is listed as being involved in a Valhalla Park project, and a contract of 44 weeks.

The “nature of the work” was described as “professional fees” and the contract amounted to R5,757,302.81.

According to the annual report, the “total amount paid in the 2021/22 financial year” was R4,183,034.

The name Glomix made a second appearance in the annual report under a “list of contractors” linked to the City of Cape Town.

Interested bidder

According to a national Department of Water and Sanitation document about a briefing held on April 2019 at Clanwilliam Dam relating to “the supply and delivery of bulk cement for the raising of Clanwilliam Dam for 48 months”, a Glomix House Brokers representative was also present at that.

The individual’s name, signature and Glomix email address were handwritten on what appeared to be a register of attendance that Daily Maverick has seen.

Meanwhile, it appears that Glomix was interested in a tender relating to The Housing Development Agency.

The tender – bidding for it closed on 21 January 2022 – was for the “relocation of 25,00o families and their belongings within the Cape Town metropole areas over a period of three years.”

Glomix House Brokers was listed as a bidder. It was not immediately clear what came of that tender. DM

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