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Security boost for Cape Town city manager after blacklisting of company owned by 28s gang case-accused

Security boost for Cape Town city manager after blacklisting of company owned by 28s gang case-accused

Cape Town municipal manager Lungelo Mbandazayo has had his security detail enhanced and wears a bulletproof vest after he led the blacklisting of a construction company owned by Nicole Johnson.

The City of Cape Town has taken a precautionary approach and enhanced the security detail of its manager, Lungelo Mbandazayo. This follows the successful blacklisting of Glomix, a construction company owned by Nicole Johnson, a crime accused and the wife of suspected 28s gang boss Ralph Stanfield.

Daily Maverick has reported extensively on matters involving the couple, including that Johnson’s company, Glomix House Brokers, has been involved in housing projects in Cape Town, worth millions of rands, for more than a decade.

Read more in Daily Maverick: Company previously flagged over ‘28s gang’ suspicions still building houses for Western Cape government

Johnson is the director of Glomix, which was awarded housing tenders after 2014 when she and Stanfield were first arrested and faced criminal charges.

The couple were arrested again, along with three others, in September 2024 in another case, related to car theft and fraud, for which they remain in custody.

stanfield johnson

Ralph Stanfield and his wife Nicole Johnson at the Cape Town Regional Court on 16 September 2023. (Photo: Gallo Images / Die Burger / Jaco Marais)

Investigation

Mbandazayo initiated an investigation into companies doing business with the municipality following the murder of City of Cape Town official Wendy Kloppers, who was gunned down in Delft, at the Symphony Way Housing Project building site, on 16 February 2023.

Mbandazayo previously said Kloppers was killed after the City refused to give in to the demands of gangsters demanding work from contractors at the housing project. 

It was after this investigation that several companies owned by Johnson were blacklisted by the municipality. 

Read more on Daily Maverick: Risky business — City of Cape Town blacklists companies linked to 28s gang case accused Nicole Johnson

It did not end there. Mbandazayo successfully petitioned the national government to take the same action after discovering that Glomix had submitted fraudulent B-BBEE certificates. 

According to a Treasury document, headed “Restricted Supplier and Tender Defaulter Report”, Glomix was blacklisted on 28 March 2024. This was to remain in effect for a decade until 27 March 2034.

The reason for the restriction read: “Submission of fraudulent B-BBEE Certificate.”

According to the Treasury document, the “City of Cape Town Metropolitan Municipality” authorised the blocking. 

hill-lewis cape town mayor

File photo of  Cape Town Mayor Geordin Hill-Lewis with City Manager Lungelo Mbandazayo. Hill-Lewis after he was officially sworn in as Mayor on Thursday, 18 November 2021. (Photo: Twitter / @CityofCT)

Security upgrade

In October 2023 it emerged in court that Stanfield wanted his henchmen to find an individual who went into hiding because he feared Stanfield would kill him. The court in Cape Town heard that someone targeted the same individual at a shooting a month before the case was heard in court. He remains in hiding for safety reasons.

Read more on Daily Maverick: ‘I want to empty a gun in his head’ – chilling affidavit about alleged 28s gang boss Ralph Stanfield’s ‘plans’

Sources in the municipality say Mbandazayo now has a convoy that includes bikes, SUVs and law enforcement officers. He also wears a bulletproof vest and his armed security also carries rifles. 

Mayoral committee member for safety and security JP Smith confirmed to Daily Maverick that the City’s VIP unit added more security for the city manager recently. 

“You see who he is messing with,” Smith told Daily Maverick. “The anticipation is that [this] kind of action does not come without consequences. This is not something we can take lightly, and the ability to harm the city manager would send a powerful message to all the other officials that it is not advisable to take that kind of action.” 

Smith said the protection was based on a threat assessment and that no threats or harm had come to the city manager yet. He said it was to be expected that the blacklisting of a company linked to an alleged underworld figure would created a huge provocation. 

“He (Mbandazayo) is causing a major aggravation to the persons whose companies are being blacklisted and if he succeeds, which he is, it will embolden local authorities to act similarly and that must be a cause of concern for these syndicates.” 

The City of Cape Town has largely driven the publicising of extortion rackets and the construction mafia by speaking out about it and even launching an extortion hotline. 

Smith said the actions taken by the City in the fight against extortion syndicates and construction mafias would inspire other municipalities, such as Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal, to also implement measures to combat the syndicates. 

A recent report by News24 said construction projects in Gauteng, worth nearly R2-billion, are under threat as construction mafias, once centred on KwaZulu-Natal, proliferate throughout the country.

ANC leader in the Cape Town caucus Banele Majingo emphasised the importance of ensuring the safety and security of all City of Cape Town employees. 

“It is within the competency of the South African Police Service to make a security assessment of the city manager and all City of Cape Town employees,” he said.

“If the SAPS, after careful consideration, determines that the safety measures for the security of the city manager must be enhanced, we believe that this determination is welcome. Furthermore, we believe the safety measures will not have much financial implications for the municipality.”

Good party secretary-general Bret Herron said it was shocking that the city manager now had a convoy of security at ratepayers’ expense. 

“The DA is vehemently opposed, in words and clearly not action, to blue lights and security convoys,” he said. 

“How is it possible that from 2018, with Patricia de Lille as mayor, to today the city manager has gone from driving himself in his own car to now enjoying a massive security convoy equivalent to the excessive security some ANC executives enjoy?” 

Herron said De Lille had neither a convoy nor an army of bodyguards, mayoral committee members drove their cars to the Civic Centre every day, and the city manager had no driver or security.

“At recent events, we’ve witnessed excessive security for mayor Geordin Hill-Lewis too. The City should come clean on what vehicles and security are being provided to politicians and officials. It’s increasingly obvious that the DA-run cities are no different to the ANC-run cities when it comes to big man syndrome.” DM

Gallery

Comments - Please in order to comment.

  • Clifton Coetzee says:

    I think he’d better get a military grade bullet-proof helmet as well as an anti-stab vest. The 28’s are psychopathic.

  • velwano velile mpikashe says:

    1.Security must be given when and if it is absolutely necessary. However, security has become an ego trip of egregious nature these days.
    2.The breakdown of law and order has become a dark sinister storm that has engulfed the whole country. Blame it on ANC that has turned the country into Animal Farm. The worst is looming large. If a serial law breaker who stole your future and that of more generations to come is allowed to form and campaign to be our president once again our democracy is abused big time. You and I have become spectators. Come 29 May 24 , come

  • jcdville stormers says:

    Brett Herron what have you ever done about construction extortion

  • Rae Earl says:

    Brett Herron obviously has an intelligence problem. Patricia De Lille has not declared war on the criminal syndicates directly so she’s out of the danger loop which applies to Mbandazayo and Hill-Lewis as they take the fight direct to the gangsters. Typical ANC dithering inaction to avoid tackling major issues of concern. De Lille should go back to her Good party SG and work on strategies to eliminate gangsterism in Cape Town instead of fretting about security costs of proactive DA members who are doing exactly that. When they succeed the financial savings to the city will far exceed their security costs, apart from saving lives.

    • Fanie Rajesh Ngabiso says:

      Good Bye I say. They add nothing for anyone.

    • Malcolm McManus says:

      Well put. Its great that someone in this country has the guts to tackle criminality head on. Unlike other parties and people like Cyril. Cyril should have less security because he is of no threat to criminals.

  • Robert Vos Vos says:

    Bret, You may have missed the point that the threat to the City Manager is real, and not just perceived! The construction mafia in Cape Town have been trying to muscle in on contracts for a while, and need to be stopped. Finally something is being done about it, and you come up with stupid comments about security. These are not vanity blue light brigades measures that are being are being written about.

  • Carsten Rasch says:

    Herron should shut up. Cape Town is the only municipality that stands up against organised crime. It has a duty to protect the officials in the firing line. Or should they do what the SAPS did to Kinnear?

  • As if the gangs are happy about this…

  • Coen Gous says:

    Gangs has been and still is the biggest threat of well-being in the Western Cape. That pertains especially to gangs involved in drug distribution all over the province. Young kids/adults are being conned, and once they are hooked, they will conduct all kind of crimes in order to pay for these drugs. That include gand wars and the killing of innocent people on the street

  • Wilhelm Boshoff says:

    Dear Bret nobody, except you, cares about Patricia!

  • Mike Schroeder says:

    “… his armed security also carries rifles”
    Either it’s several security people, then they “also carry rifles” or it’s only one, then he “also carries a rifle” as it’s doubtful he would carry more than one … hi editor!

  • William Dryden says:

    Brett Herron, the reason Patricia Delille could drive to work in her own car, was because she turned a blind eye to the construction Mafia. Stop trying to stir up trouble to get brownie points for your party, the DA is doing a great job and you know it but will never acknowledge it.

  • jerry maycock says:

    Brett Herron must take us for idiots. De Lille and others had no security as they were not taking the crime syndicates on. 9f course if he Happy to let the criminals fleece the rate and tax payers for billions with below standard housing projects etc then let him. Frankly crime is out of control in SA, supported by idiotic politicians too keen their own power and ego’s

  • This must stop 🛑 immediately

  • Truth Hurts says:

    Am I the only one who noticed this on the article?

    “The couple were arrested again, along with three others, in September 2024 in another case, related to car theft and fraud, for which they remain in custody.”

    What happened to 2024? What month is this? Editor

  • Grumpy Old Man says:

    I was told (and it is certainly worth verifying) that Edwin Sodi remains an approved ‘supplier’ on the National Treasury database!

  • Oliver Rissik says:

    Herron would probably be the first to winge and whine if something happened to either Mayor or City manager if they weren’t provided with sufficient security. He should try and make an intelligent comment here.

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