POLITICS OF CRIME
SAPS investigating allegations Cape Town mayco member Malusi Booi ‘took cash from gangsters’
A police investigation shows that allegations against fired Cape Town mayco member Malusi Booi include that he accepted cash gratifications from underworld figures. This has emerged after a judge, in a separate case, warned that 28s gangsters infiltrated the Western Cape’s cop service.
Dual investigations are revealing the extent of gang collusion allegations involving high-level police officers and a politician in South Africa’s gangsterism capital, the Western Cape.
In October last year, Daily Maverick reported on a judgment by Judge Daniel Thulare that said evidence in a gang-related case suggested members of the 28s gang had corrupted not only low-ranking police officers in the Western Cape, but also the management structure.
Western Cape Premier Alan Winde, in reaction to the judgment, subsequently announced that he had instructed the province’s police ombud Oswald Reddy, who is a retired cop, to investigate the links between police officers and gangsters as detailed in the document.
Dual gang collusion investigations
The South African Police Service (SAPS) had also said it would analyse the contents of the judgment.
In the latest case involving gang collusion claims, the City of Cape Town’s human settlements mayoral committee member Malusi Booi’s office was raided on 15 March as part of a fraud and corruption case.
Booi has not been criminally charged.
Daily Maverick can reveal, though, that among the allegations against him, are that he accepted cash from “notorious” underworld figures in exchange for information about housing tenders and had dodgy relationships with gangsters in Bishop Lavis, parts of which are known as 28s gang strongholds.
Through a political lens, this all means that via Booi, there is an investigation into activities linked to the DA-run City of Cape Town and Western Cape government, and that via Thulare’s judgment, there have been investigations into the SAPS, which falls under the ANC.
Gang collusion claims therefore taint both political parties and create a worrying cycle involving the SAPS investigating a city official, while some of its own members are under investigation for gang collusion.
This hints at the extent of corruption, suspected or otherwise.
In the case of Booi, who has not yet spoken publicly about the allegations against him, some of his supporters have reportedly said that he is being unfairly targeted.
‘Notorious underworld figures’
Some details about the allegations against him are contained in documents filed in the Cape Town Magistrates’ Court last month.
According to a police application for a search warrant relating to Booi, electronic equipment was to be seized and scoured for key words including “tenders” and “payments,” as well as the names of alleged 28s gang boss Ralph Stanfield and alleged Sexy Boys gang leader Jerome “Donkie” Booysen.
Daily Maverick has also established that according to a police statement relating to the search and date stamped 15 March this year – the day Booi’s office was raided – it was alleged that he “received gratification in the form of cash” and that “these cash payments are paid by notorious individuals in the criminal underworld… to facilitate the provision of information regarding the City’s tenders in the Human Settlements Directorate.”
R20,000 to R100,000 cash
According to the statement, it was also alleged in an affidavit that Booi had “corrupt relationships with certain service providers and gangsters in Bishop Lavis”.
Other allegations included that Booi would send staff to a garage in Bishop Lavis, owned by a suspected gangster, where they would fetch an amount of cash between R20,000 to R100,000.
This cash, it was alleged, would be deposited into the bank account of a personal assistant who was then instructed via WhatsApp which of Booi’s expenses should be paid with it.
The police application for a search warrant relating to Booi also flagged “Glomix” as a keyword that was to be searched on seized electronic equipment.
Last month Daily Maverick revealed that the City of Cape Town, via the Western Cape government, was still doing business with Glomix House Brokers – its director is Stanfield’s wife Nicole Johnson.
Both Johnson and Stanfield were part of a criminal case involving allegations relating to firearms and police corruption.
In 2019 there had already been some controversy when it was reported that Glomix had a tender to build 30 houses as part of a housing project in the Cape Town suburb of Valhalla Park.
Construction mafia crimes
Residents had complained 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.
Glomix is still involved in building houses in Valhalla Park in a project expected to wrap up next year.
This suggests the City of Cape Town and Western Cape government view the company as being above board.
More focus was placed on construction-related crimes, that include gangsters who target housing and construction projects, extorting contractors, sometimes through violence and intimidation, around Cape Town in the run-up to the raid on Booi’s office.
He previously spoke out against the problem.
The @CityofCT is intensifying efforts to deal with extortion and crime on our infrustructure projects. We appeal to Communities to assist and protect their projects #1MillionRandReward#HumanSettlementsCOCT #ServicesToThePeople pic.twitter.com/7ARb5KRoaa
— Malusi Booi (@MalusiBooi) March 2, 2023
No comment and scapegoat claims
Booi has not spoken publicly about the police raid at his office nor the investigation.
Following his suspension, he did not respond to requests for comment.
On Sunday 16 April Daily Maverick sent questions about the police investigation to two cellphone numbers listed for Booi, but the messages did not appear to go through.
Calls also did not go through.
A query sent to Booi’s City of Cape Town email address, as well as another to a Facebook account under his name, were not responded to.
As of Sunday 17 April 2023, social media accounts under his name were last active on the day his office was raided.
The Sunday Times recently reported that individuals who supported Booi believed he was being unfairly targeted because he wanted to run for the Western Cape DA leadership.
Meanwhile, the Cape Coloured Congress’s Fadiel Adams told Eyewitness News that Booi was the victim of a DA cover-up.
“Malusi Booi doesn’t give instructions. He’s just a political appointment. He’s just there for oversight. Who signs the tenders? Who cancels the tenders? … Those are the questions that must be asked…
“This is a big cover-up. We have found the place where the DA washes its money. This is their laundromat. This is what we know. Malusi Booi will be required to be the face of this corruption, but we know it’s much bigger,” Adams was quoted as saying. DM