Thursday, January 31, 2013

Mac Maharaj: The 'foul secret' that has torn sister from sister

No Fear No Favour - The Truth is Paramount......






01 FEB 2013 00:00 - SAM SOLESTEFAANS BRÜMMER


Presidential spokesperson Mac Maharaj's sister-in-law has spoken to the M&G about her knowledge of a secret Swiss account.




New evidence has emerged to support the claim that Mac ­Maharaj and his wife, Zarina, took kickbacks on a 1990s contract for new drivers' licences – and it comes from the heart of the presidential spokesperson's family: Zarina's sister, who has chosen to go public with what she says is her knowledge of the origins of the Swiss account into which the money was paid.
The payments, in 1996, flowed allegedly from a subsidiary of French multinational Thales, via a Swiss account controlled by Schabir Shaik, to an adjacent account opened by Zarina Maharaj.

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Shaik's dealings with Thales are best known from his corruption conviction in part for facilitating an agreement for the company to pay Jacob Zuma in return for his "protection and support" as the arms deal scandal broke.
During 1996, however, Thales subsidiary IDMatics was in a consortium with Shaik, bidding for the contract to produce the new credit card-style drivers' licences. Mac Maharaj was minister of transport at the time and Zarina's sister, Shirene Carim, an uMkhonto weSizwe (MK) veteran, was living in London.
Maharaj has always refused to answer media questions about the payments. And when the Mail & Guardian sought to publish details of an in-camera interview under oath with the Scorpions in which he gave answers at odds with the facts, he laid a criminal complaint. He is also opposing a court application for permission to publish details of the interview.
Now, in a move that appears driven in equal measure by courage and bitterness, anger and principle, Shirene Carim has come forward to recount the details of Zarina's trip to Geneva in October 1996 to open a Swiss account and to lay bare what she knew about Shaik's involvement.
The existence of the bank account has been known for some time, but Carim has provided fresh details corroborating the forensic record and adding her view of the attitude of the Maharajs at the time.
Documents obtained by the Scorpions during its investigation of Maharaj showed that Zarina opened an account with Banque SCS Alliance in Geneva on October 14 1996. It was into this account that more than $210 000 was transferred, cash which originated from Thales subsidiary IDMatics.
Case withdrawn
The Scorpions case against Maharaj was withdrawn in 2009 by acting National Director of Public Prosecutions Mokotedi Mpshe for reasons that remain unexplained.
Shirene Carim, who served with MK's special operations division from 1984 to 1987, took the initiative to contact the M&G during a visit to South Africa from her home in London.
She told the M&G she struggled with the decision to make disclosures that would brand her as disloyal to her family and forever cement the rift with her elder sister and possibly the wider family.
But it is also evident that Zarina's alleged disclosure to her sister that she was going to Geneva to open a bank account to receive money from Shaik injected a poisonous secret into their already difficult relationship from which it never recovered.
Shirene set out the allegations in an initial email to the M&G Centre for Investigative Journalism without at first disclosing her identity.
"I'd hoped that by now, justice would prevail.
"In 1996 or 1997, Mac's wife stayed with me in London UK on her way to Geneva to open a bank account, as she could only have been boasting to me.
'In shock'
"I was given the details of the provider of the funds – Shaik – and the reason why. I was in shock until she left, to be back the following evening.
"She called the next afternoon, having missed her flight due to the time difference in Switzerland of which she was unaware.
"I asked her if I should call my friends in Geneva who would collect her and give her a bed for the night. She declined, saying she'd take a hotel room and Schabir would 'have to' pay for it.
"When she should have been back, a call came and I insisted on knowing who was speaking. 'Schabir' came the answer. I told him she wasn't back from Geneva where she'd gone to open a bank account for the proceeds of bribery and corruption.
"She arrived, left for South Africa and the next communication was a call from her husband, Mac, who told me they were writing their wills and would I stand as executor should anything happen to them.
"I reminded him that I'd do anything for the welfare of their children who I loved as my own. He thanked me and told me he'd be in touch. I've never heard from him or seen his wife and children to this day.
"I have been in a state of confusion ever since."
Graphic: John McCann.
Legacy of a 'foul secret'
In a subsequent interview with the M&G, Shirene expanded on this account and her reasons for coming forward now.
Shirene alleged that in the 16 years since 1996, on five trips to South Africa, she had attempted to see her sister face to face in order to deal with the legacy of what she called this "foul secret".
Each time she was rebuffed, she claimed.
Shirene's story is consistent with the known facts. The M&G has discovered, among the evidence submitted at the Shaik trial, previously unreported information suggestive of a link between Shaik, Thales and the account. Among the documents seized by the Scorpions from Thales' offices in South Africa were business cards and handwritten numbers for a director of Banque SCS and a fax found during the raids on Shaik featured a business card for the same director.
In addition, details of the build-up to and aftermath of the breakdown in her relationship with Zarina also provide some corroboration for Shirene's account.
First came a visit by Mac and Zarina to London earlier in 1996, when Nelson Mandela made a triumphant state visit as president of a newly democratic South Africa.
Mandela, with Mac and family in tow, arrived on July 9 1996, Shirene's 50th birthday.
Shirene's celebration
Mandela's visit ended on July 13, but Mac and Zarina could not stay for Shirene's celebration, set to take place on Sunday July 14, despite having been invited long in advance.
One of the reasons they stood her up is telling.
On July 2, Schabir Shaik had written to engineering firm Brown & Root, Shaik's intended partners in another project under the department of transport, the planned new La Mercy airport outside Durban, now known as King Shaka.
Shaik asked the American company to make arrangements for a Disney World holiday by the Maharaj family. The intended travel dates were July 13 to 16.
In his letter, Shaik noted that this assistance to the minister was "strategically important to ourselves".
The family duly skipped the birthday party and Brown & Root picked up the R15 000-plus tab for accommodation and airport transfer and invoiced Shaik. It is not clear whether Maharaj ever repaid Shaik.

Schabir Shaik. (Media 24)
During this time, Shaik also addressed a letter to Mac at the Dorchester Hotel in London, where he was staying as part of Mandela's entourage.
The letter confirmed the booking at Disney World and included the following note to Mac: "Brown & Root people, my partner and colleagues in South Africa, were expecting you to call them. Kindly advise Dr Anwar Wissa when that would be possible given your more relaxed schedule in the States.
Zarina's bitterness
"Special message. I understand from my warehouse that the expected documents had reached your desk in the UK. Kindly confirm at your soonest."
Mac and Zarina did see Shirene during that London trip, however. Shirene and her partner Ted joined them for a meal at a restaurant on the Thames.
After dinner, despite the glow of South Africa's democratic transition and the glittering setting, some of Zarina's bitterness burst through, Shirene alleged.
"We went out for a coffee on the balcony. Zarina stood there and said, in front of everyone, in front of my daughters, in front of their partners, in front of her children, she said: 'If it wasn't for you, Mac would be minister of defence'."
The background to that comment was, according to Shirene, her perceived political unreliability: "According to them, I was a renegade."
She believes this stemmed partly from a report she made to Mac about conditions in ANC camps in Angola following the 1984 Pango mutiny, which was brutally put down.
"I was in the camps in Pango and I was listening to the people complaining [about conditions] and I was saying to them, 'I will take your complaints back to HQ.'

Mac Mahraj and his wife Zarina. (Sunday Times)
Causes of the mutiny
"So, when I went back to Lusaka, I said to Mac: 'You know people are very unhappy … and the causes of the mutiny, I've been told it was this and it was that.'
"Some of the soldiers had been [there] since the 1976 uprisings: they were not being deployed … many of them had not even been allowed to set foot outside the camp in eight years.
"And Mac said: 'Oh you're just a …' I forget the term he used – someone on the periphery."
Shirene is aware that she will be accused of drawing on this well of bitterness to make up a damaging story about her sister after the existence of the Geneva bank account was first revealed in City Press in March 2007.
Against that accusation, she said, she had raised the issue before.
Her partner, Ted Dougherty, confirmed that she long ago relayed to him the outlines of Zarina's Geneva gambit and its implications.
Shirene said she also told her brother Adam, who lives in Canada, and her daughter Magali long before the details became public.
"I told Magali because she was staunch ANC and she said, 'Mum, you've got to go to the ANC and report them.' I said, 'Magali can you imagine what would happen if we brought this up? What would happen to their children?'"
An explanation
Shirene said Adam did not want to get involved and she was worried that a wedge had been established between her and her daughter.
"Since my sister went to visit her in June last year, she hasn't communicated with me. I don't know what Zarina has told her."
Shirene said she also wrote to Mac and Zarina asking for an explanation for why they had involved her.
They never wrote back or came to see her again, in spite of passing through London on many occasions.
In about 2007, she also wrote an email about Zarina to two other people: activist and artist John Matshikiza and former M&G editor Ferial Haffajee.
Matshikiza was a friend of Shirene's when he lived in London.
Involved in corruption
When she realised he had written the foreword to Zarina's autobiography, Dancing to a Different Rhythm, published in 2006, she made contact: "I needed to warn him so he would be prepared whenever it became public knowledge that she had been involved in corruption."
She said neither Matshikiza (who died in 2008) nor Haffajee replied to her.
Haffajee said that she received the correspondence and wrote back, but did not receive a reply. She said she recalled that Swiss accounts were mentioned amid "personal stuff" about Zarina and she passed the information on to the newsroom with a caveat about the source, but it was never followed up.
Corroboration of these contacts was provided by Zarina herself. Shirene showed the M&G an SMS from her most recent communication with her sister, in December last year, in which Zarina notes: "Shirene, the ever widening chasm between us can perhaps still be narrowed – the content of your emails to Johnny when he was still alive and a journalist, notwithstanding. Drop in in the new year."
But the casualness of the invitation infuriated Shirene: "Like ... I should 'drop in' – even if you might be busy  – [when] what I wanted to say was: 'I wanted to see you only to ask you why you burdened me with your foul secret which you expect me to take to my grave'."
* Got a tip-off for us about this story? Email amabhungane@mg.co.za
The M&G Centre for Investigative Journalism (amaBhungane) produced this story. All views are ours. See www.amabhungane.co.za for our stories, activities and funding sources.








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COMMENTS BYS SONNY


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It' s like a violent strike on a grape farm.

When the grapes go sour the apples turn rotten and fall from the trees.

The ANC was corrupt prior to 1994 - They are Corrupt NOW! 

Was this not in the same period Jesse Duarte was driving around with a 'Fragile' drivers licence?  Without having passed a driving test?

..........and the Premier raked in money for his design on the Gauteng number plates?.........

The World can change but corruption remains with us.


RELIGIOUS CONFLICT IN AFRICA

No Fear No Favour - The truth is visual........


















JOHANNESBURG  31 JANUARY 2013 - 21:10



NIGERIA - 2013





This is a brutal example of how far the struggle between Muslims and Christians in Nigeria has reached.
Muslims are determined to impose their 'religion' all over Africa as well as in other continents and countries
of the world. Islam has but one goal: rule the world at any cost!"
"And where are the International Human Rights Organizations?
Christians are burnt alive in Nigeria: a horrific Holocaust right in front of International indifference!
As denounced by Father Juan Carlos Martos, on behalf of the Missionari Clarettiani, via del Sacro Cuore di Maria, Rome, Italy."
"By publishing this graphic document on Facebook, I have intended to make the world aware of certain terrible events totally ignored or minimized by the mainstream media; an authentic genocide so cruel and inhuman only comparable with the most hateful and vile acts in the Nazi extermination camps."
"To my great surprise, Facebook has criticized me for the publication of this graphic document as a proof of the Holocaust that Christians have been suffering in Nigeria in the last ten years. According to Facebook's Security policy of the 'social' Network, this photo has been classified as 'pornographic', 'violent' or 'inappropriate' and hence I was disallowed to publish any picture for a week. And I was threatened drastic measures if I insist publishing any document that prove the terrible violations of Human Rights in Nigeria.
This attitude by the (Spanish) Facebook Management is an attack to the freedom of expression as much as a shameful insult to the 500 victims (only in this horrible episode) slaughtered by Islamic terror only for being Christian."
"I thought that this social network, originated in the United States, would not bend its knees in front of terror Especially, when still healing their wounds suffered in the gruesome 9/11 attack, just as our own 3/11 at Madrid railway station, all innocent victims of the wild fury and insanity of Islamic terror."
"This seems even more unacceptable in Spain, a Democratic state, where the rights of opinion, expression and religion are guaranteed by the Constitution (Art. 16 and 20), if there is an attempt to limit such rights, let alone through threats and coercion thus weakening their freedom of expression by condemning as "inappropriate" a graphic document (not a photomontage) which reflects a brutal reality in all its crudeness."
"Contrarily, the Administrators of Facebook Spain should welcome this public protest advocating that such a barbarian act will never be replicated and that its perpetrators will be brought to justice. This is a right and duty of every citizen: a service to society, ultimate goal, I feel, of any network that defines itself as 'social'."
"Regrettably, if the murders continue, this is greatly because truth is always hidden to the sovereign people, so that they may not be aware and 'disdained' by it: complicit silence by the mainstream media leads to the indifference of the international political community facing this unspeakable Holocaust! Let alone the cowardice already rooted in the western world facing the Islamic terror. A consequence of the stupid "Alliance of Civilizations": another regrettable incident of our former Prime Minister Rodriguez Zapatero."
"Can you imagine the reaction of the Islamic terrorist organization in the (impossible) case of a massacre of Muslims in a mosque, by the hands of Christian terrorists? And how widely would our media cover and condemn the crime and the criminals?"
"Therefore, from this modest blog, I ask a favour from all people who are reading me: please distribute this photo and its comments using all the media you have. If only for commemorating these martyrs since, unfortunately, Facebook seems to be on the side of the executioners by preventing the publication of such tragic events."
Juan Carlos Martos cmf Segretariato di PVMissionari ClarettianiVia Sacro Cuore à Maria-500197-Rome



COMMENTS BY SONNY




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With all our technology the truth sometimes never gets revealed!

Genocide of races, religions, political groups, labour, children, foreign populations, and minorities   have been common since the creation of mankind~! 

Even when told by the Catholic Church.

The Global community just shrug their shoulders and walk past!

Murder on FARMERS  in South Africa should be included on this list!





Fais Ombud finds Sharemax directors liable for investor's loss

Special Investigations

Author: Julius Cobbett|

31 January 2013 00:57

Fais Ombud finds Sharemax directors liable for investor's loss


Scathing determination declares Zambezi syndication 'nothing more than a Ponzi scheme.'

JOHANNESBURG – Fais Ombud Noluntu Bam has found four Sharemax directors liable for an investor’s loss.
The determination is unusual because it is normally only financial advisers who are held liable for bad investment advice.
However, in a lengthy determination, Bam has set out why she believes the Sharemax directors should be held accountable. The determination was signed on Tuesday. It can be downloaded in two parts here: part 1, part 2.
The determination could pave the way for thousands of other investors to claim losses from Sharemax’s directors.
In her latest determination, Bam is scathing of the Sharemax directors, who she accuses of “violating the law.”  Bam's determination was received after close of business on Wednesday and the Sharemax directors were not immediately available for comment.
Bam writes: “The facts before this office support the conclusion that the investment, as promoted and executed by Sharemax, was nothing more than a Ponzi scheme. The directors of Sharemax violated the law and on this basis [they too] must be held liable for the investors’ loss.”
The complaint in question was laid by pensioner Gerbrecht Siegrist, 73, who is now destitute after investing her capital in two Sharemax-promoted syndications: Zambezi and The Villa.
The complaint was initially laid against her financial adviser, CJ Botha. However, the following six respondents were added to the complaint: Sharemax Investments, FSP Network (trading as Unlisted Securities South Africa), and the following four Sharemax directors: Gert Goosen, Willie Botha, Dominique Haese and Andre Brand.
Siegrist’s late husband left her an amount of money which was intended to provide her with an income. This money was placed in conventional investments, but on Siegrist’s broker’s advice, she invested R460 000 in Zambezi on April 2, 2008, and a further R120 000 in The Villa on July 15, 2008.
Siegrist’s broker, CJ Botha, claims that Siegrist instructed him to invest in Sharemax. But, says Bam, in the same breath Botha “admits that the complainant wanted an investment where her capital would be safe.”
Bam notes that Zambezi was a risky investment unsuitable for pensioners. Yet she notes that brokers who sold Sharemax products “almost without fail targeted pensioners.”
Bam found that the directors of Sharemax and FSP Network “were aware of the fact that the scheme [Zambezi] was both illegal and not commercially viable and yet they recklessly took investors’ funds. Investors whom within their knowledge were almost without exception pensioners who could ill afford the inevitable loss.”
Key to Bam’s determination is the finding that Sharemax and its directors were ultimately responsible for advice rendered by CJ Botha.
Bam links Sharemax to Botha through FSP Network, which traded under the name Unlisted Securities South Africa (USSA).
USSA provided many financial advisers with the necessary Financial Services Board (FSB) licence necessary to sell Sharemax products. The business was described by Bam in a previous determination as “nothing short of the hiring out of a licence for a small monthly fee.”
For more on USSA, see: the following articles: Broker offers widow costly Sharemax advice, FSB linked to Sharemax “licence for hire” scheme, and FSB official’s husband pays 13% return.
At its peak, USSA had 1376 representative brokers, all of whom sold Sharemax products. Bam notes that all of USSA’s registered brokers were only allowed to market Sharemax products.
What’s more, Sharemax director Gert Goosen was also USSA’s sole director and key individual.
Bam writes that Sharemax and USSA were “joined at the hip.”
“What Sharemax attempted to do was to create a buffer between itself and the brokers and the investors,” notes Bam. “This was a futile exercise as in law, Sharemax and its directors will, ultimately, be responsible for the conduct of their section 13 representatives.”
Bam says that Sharemax director Dominique Haese “gives no explanation as to why Sharemax stood by and took money from investors, via their ‘supervised’ broker network, who were clearly investing in a product that was not suitable for them.
Bam says that Haese must have known that the majority of the investors brought in by the representatives were pensioners.
Bam ordered all seven respondents, jointly and severally, the one paying the other to be absolved, to pay Siegrist the amount of R580 000. If the respondents comply with the order, they are entitled to Siegrist’s share certificate.
Image source: A risk-reward matrix from Bigstock















Released men linked to dozens of armed robbery cases

Without Fear or Favour - The Truth is Paramount......











Court records show that the prosecutor, Yuri Gangai, told the court that if the men were granted bail they would automatically be deported.
31 January 2013 | PAUL KIRK
    
THE six men acquitted last week in Durban of robbing a casino walked out  of Westville Prison despite being being linked to dozens of armed robberies and murder in other parts of the country.

The group, which allegedly terrorised banks, cash-in-transit companies and casinos around the country, were arrested by members of the Cato Manor Serious and Violent Crimes Unit during 2010 – weeks after they allegedly robbed Sibiya Casino north of Durban. 

The modus operandi used during that robbery mirrors that of a gang that  stormed the Carnival City Casino on Monday. 

When the group was initially arrested  it was decided they  would first  stand trial in Durban for the Sibiya Casino robbery where a patron  was shot dead, as this had been the most recent case against them. 

After the Durban trial they  were to be taken to Gauteng to stand trial.

Spokesman for the Police Ministry, Zweli Mnisi, did not respond to e-mails and telephone calls at the time of going to press. 

During a bail application after their arrest, prosecutor Yuri Gangai told the court that the six men had featured in 35 to  40 armed robbery dockets. Thulani Hlatswayo, Malvern Ndlovu, Lumkani Dube, Bongani Lukhele, Philani Gumpu and Innocent Shabalala are also wanted for at least three armed cash heists in which police officers were shot.

According to an affidavit by Captain Neville Eva of the Cato Manor unit, which was used to oppose bail, Ndlovu and Dube are allegedly linked to nine and 12 robberies respectively in Gauteng.  Lukhele and Gumpu are linked to three robberies in Johannesburg.  

Eva said the Home Affairs Department had told him that the men were all Zimbabweans and that only Hlatswayo and Shabalala were in the country legally. Gumpu boasted that he had been a former Zimbabwean special forces soldier and had served as a bodyguard to President Robert Mugabe. 

In opposing bail, according to court records, Ndlovu has six arrests warrants issued against him relating to the armed robbery of banks.

Court records seen by The Citizen  show that the prosecutor in the case, Yuri Gangai, told the court that if the men were granted bail they would automatically be deported as they were illegally in South Africa. But instead of being deported when released from prison, the men walked free.

Durban’s Daily News yesterday reported that a suspended member of the Cato Manor Organised Crime Unit had tipped off police in Gauteng that the Carnival City robbery was being planned from the prison where the men were being held. The newspaper quoted the un- named suspended officer as saying that he was certain the Carnival City robbery was carried out by the group released from Durban.

Several sources said that the South African Banking Risk Information Centre (Sabric) had been tipped off that the  group might be acquitted and might  plan more 
robberies. 

These sources all told The Citizen that no specific information on where the men planned to strike had been provided. The sources all indicated that the SA Police Service  had been warned that, should the men be acquitted, they should not be released as they were wanted for scores of cash heists. 

Sabric spokesman Bongani Diako could not be reached at the time of going to press.

The Citizen

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COMMENTS BY SONNY



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Why were the investigating officers not in Court?
THE PROSECUTOR YURI GANGAI (Russian?) HAD A DUTY TO KEEP THE PRISONERS IN CUSTODY?
Was he in any way involved in their negligent/criminal release?
The NPA is responsible for this miscarriage of Justice!
IT IS OBVIOUS THAT THESE CRIMINALS SHOULD BE SUSPECTED OF ROBBING CARNIVAL CITY CASINO ON MONDAY MORNING?
The members of the suspended Cato Manor Serious and Violent Crime Unit cannot be held responsible for this National blunder!