‘We won’t tolerate housing project malfeasance’ — W Cape Premier says beneath darkening gangsterism cloud
Western Cape Premier Alan Winde has told the province’s cop boss that his government is willing to disclose information that may help with investigations into construction mafia crimes. This while focus is on allegations that Cape Town mayco member Malusi Booi has dubious links with gangsters.
Documentation about housing contract concerns that could link any individuals or companies to alleged criminal activity should be reviewed.
This is contained in a letter, dated 6 April 2023, from Western Cape Premier Alan Winde to the province’s police commissioner Lieutenant-General Thembisile Patekile.
The letter largely focuses on Malusi Booi, who was recently fired from the post of mayoral committee member for human settlements after his office was raided as part of a fraud and corruption investigation.
Daily Maverick reported on Monday 17 April that police were investigating allegations including that Booi 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.
Booi, who has not spoken on the allegations publicly, has not been charged with any crime.
In some previous matters in which public officials — particularly police — have been accused of being corrupt, counter-allegations have been that they are the targets of smear campaigns.
With regards to Booi, the Sunday Times recently reported that individuals who supported him believed he was being unfairly targeted because he wanted to run for the Western Cape DA leadership.
‘Deeply concerning’ allegations
Winde, in his letter to Patekile, said that the nature of allegations against Booi were “deeply concerning”.
He said on 28 March he had a meeting with infrastructure MEC Tertuis Simmers.
“We agreed that I would write to you on behalf of the provincial government and express our commitment and willingness to proactively engage with SAPS on this matter,” Winde said.
“We want to ensure that, if there are any possible concerns regarding the provincial government on this matter or any matter related to human settlements, we proactively make any and all relevant information available to [South African Police Service] SAPS immediately.”
Home and office equipment seized
Police raided Booi’s office on 15 March as part of the fraud and corruption case.
In his letter to Patekilie, Winde said he understood Boooi’s “removal” was due to a police commercial crimes unit investigation.
“I understand [during the raid police] seized electronic equipment and documents from his home and office, as well as from an employee of the City of Cape Town in the human settlements directorate,” Winde wrote.
“I take this matter very seriously.”
According to a police application for a search warrant relating to Booi, electronic equipment was to be seized and scoured for keywords 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.
Another keyword to be searched for was “Glomix.”
Daily Maverick previously reported that the City of Cape Town, via the Western Cape government, was 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 it was reported that Glomix had a tender to build 30 houses as part of a housing project in Valhalla Park.
But this had caused some controversy with residents complaining 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.
‘Review all documents’
In his letter to Patekile, Winde referenced Glomix.
He said that Simmers had asked his head of department to “review all documentation related to possible concerns in connection with human settlements contracts that may link any and all individuals or companies alleged to be involved in criminal activity.”
Winde said “one such company” that was “mentioned in the public realm” was Glomix.
He added that the provincial government had written to the City of Cape Town to ask that it share any information uncovered during their own investigations “which may help us identify areas of criminal activity, if any, with regard to human settlements’ projects involving the provincial government.”
Winde concluded his letter to Patekile with: “Myself and my government are fully available to support SAPS in investigating this matter fully and ensuring that those involved in criminal activity, especially in the critical area of building houses for some of the most vulnerable members of our society, are dealt with swiftly by the law.
“My administration is committed to transparency and will in no way tolerate malfeasance in any form.”
Construction mafia crimes
Daily Maverick has previously reported on how violence and extortion-style crimes have plagued construction projects in Cape Town.
Read more in Daily Maverick: Spate of shootings in Cape Town linked to political, gang and construction mafia elements
On 16 February, City of Cape Town official Wendy Kloppers was gunned down in Delft, at the Symphony Way Housing Project building site.
Cape Town Mayor Geordin Hill-Lewis previously said: “We have a huge problem in the housing space with contractors leaving job sites.
“There is a practical risk that this work will not be completed, will be delayed, or … cancelled and moved to another location. That is very unfortunate for the communities that rely on those services.” DM
Caryn Dolley has spent years tracing the footprints of crime/drug kingpins from across the world. In her latest book, Clash of the Cartels, Dolley provides unprecedented insight into how specific drug cartels and syndicates have operated via South Africa, becoming embroiled in deadly violence in the country and bolstering local criminal networks. Available now from the Daily Maverick Shop.