The Democratic Alliance (DA) welcomes the arrest of the first municipal official in the VBS crackdown.
The official reportedly faces charges of criminal financial misconduct under section 173 of the Municipal Finance Management Act.
The DA has made the point that far too few officials and councillors who breach their fiduciary duties have been prosecuted under section 173.
While charges such as fraud, corruption and money laundering are difficult to prove, evidence of financial misconduct in South Africa’s 267 municipalities is not in short supply.
Evidence obtained from municipal officials arrested for this lesser offence can also help prosecutors secure convictions on more serious charges.
The trail of evidence might even lead to the doors of powerful politicians, including Members of Parliament.
The DA hopes that if this happens the police and prosecutors will maintain the courage and determination now on display.
Click here to contribute to the DA’s legal action challenging irrational and dangerous elements of the hard lockdown in court