Julius Malema supporters are gathering ahead of a night vigil for the expelled ANC youth leader at Nirvana Hall in Polokwane. Malema is due to appear in court in Polokwane tomorrow, reportedly on alleged charges of money laundering fraud and corruption.
The vigil has been organised by 'Friends of the Youth League.' Municipal spokesperson, Simon Mokwatedi says they expect 100 buses to arrive tonight. An anti-Malema group is expected to gather in Malema's hometown, Seshego.
Earlier, four of Malema's former business associates were granted bail of R40 000 each in a multi-million rand fraud and money-laundering case. Businessmen Lesiba Gwangwa, Selby Manthatha, his wife Hellen Morerwa and Kagiso Dichabe appeared after handing themselves over to police this morning.
The Congress of the South African Trade Unions (Cosatu), which has long protested corruption in the province, says it’s a day to celebrate.
Cosatu Provincial Secretary Dan Seabi says: "We must congratulate the law enforcement agencies for the work they have done this far. However, we must indicate that there is still more work to be done and we expect that even people in higher offices like we see here the law will catch up with them."
Malema kept a low profile
Meanwhile, the man at the centre of the storm kept a low profile. Rumours that Malema would hand himself in at the Garsfontein Police Station in Pretoria disappointed journalists who waited there for hours. Malema is reportedly already in Polokwane, where he will appear in court tomorrow.
While his charges are not yet public, it’s alleged he made millions from a deal awarded to On-Point Engineering. Malema is one of two shareholders in On-Point.
Hawks Spokesperson McIntosh Polela says: "They misrepresented themselves, and were paid for work done at times. But we will allege that kickbacks were paid and that amounts to a charge of corruption and those monies were channeled between different companies to mislead and misrepresent. To show that these were genuine amounts or transactions whereas in fact were amounts that were gained through corruption that’s what we will say at the moment."
The ANCYL has meanwhile distanced itself from the night vigil.