Sunday, October 27, 2013

Tokyo Sexwale arrested in New York

The Crime committed in 1976.....In the late 1970s, he was charged with terrorism and conspiracy and sent to Robben Island where he met fellow political prisoner Nelson Mandela, who had been sent there 12 years prior.

Sexwale was released in 1990, and like something out a movie, he ended up marrying Judy van Vuuren, the paralegal that represented him while he was in prison.

The Crime ......

Sexwale had already hurled a hand grenade onto the truck’s front seat. Fire from the burning Land Rover lit up the sky and shrapnel blew everywhere, with some fragments landing and lodging into one police officer’s body. While the police officers writhed in agony, Sexwale and the others escaped in a kombi that raced to the scene. !

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On November 30, 1976, Mosima Gabriel “Tokyo” Sexwale and three others waited alongside the road at Bordergate, an area sandwiched between Mozambique and South Africa, and lying approximately 280 miles from Johannesburg. They carried suitcases (presumably booby traps). One police unit observed the wanderers and radioed in to headquarters, prompting another armed unit to head out into a northerly direction to respond to the call. Upon arriving, the police officers questioned the foursome about their luggage and requested to open the totes. The men declined. Not believing their story of not having keys, the police motioned the men to board the truck. They obliged and squatted together on the floor board. Suddenly, this unity ended when Sexwale moved forward into a crouching position and took a seat upon the radio box. It was then that the driver smelled an odor and applied the brakes, but it was too late as Sexwale had already hurled a hand grenade onto the truck’s front seat. Fire from the burning Land Rover lit up the sky and shrapnel blew everywhere, with some fragments landing and lodging into one police officer’s body. While the police officers writhed in agony, Sexwale and the others escaped in a kombi that raced to the scene.

Injured passengers left bloodstains all over the kombi, which Ramokgadi later designated his brother to clean. That was not the only evidence of what transpired. At the crime scene, the police found a defensive Russian hand grenade called a “pineapple.” Another discovery occurred a month later when officers found a bag near a tree some distance from where the explosion had occurred.

Sunday 27 October 2013 16:03
Businessman Tokyo Sexwale
Businessman Tokyo Sexwale (SABC)
BusinessmanTokyo SexwaleUSNew YorkSouth Africa
Businessman Tokyo Sexwale will approach the US government after he was arrested in New York for being on a list of banned persons to that country.

The former Housing minister's lawyer, Lesley Mkhabela says Sexwale was arrested at JF Kennedy Airport while on a business trip to New York.

Former struggle activists were banned from visiting America during apartheid. The ban has since been lifted but not all names have been removed from the list, said Mkhabela.

"He has instructed us to take the matter up with the authorities of the US so we will address the letter to the US embassy in South Africa," said Sexwale lawyer.

He says that they will also send the copy to the state's departments requiring clarification on the status of this issue and also assuring that this shall not happen again in the future.


How Tokyo took a tumble

July 13 2013 at 03:41pm
By Janet Smith

tokyo sexwale june 7

Independent Newspapers
Axed Human Settlements Minister Tokyo Sexwale Photo: Candice Chaplin
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How Sexwale learnt his fate

Johannesburg - There was no emotion when President Jacob Zuma told us he was firing Tokyo Sexwale. He couldn’t have been more cold. He stood up at a special media briefing at the Union Buildings on Tuesday afternoon and cut dead any immediate political ambitions in the ANC of a man who wanted to be king – twice.

His marriage over, his reputation savaged and now effectively unemployed, Sexwale is having an annus horribilis. Certainly, he remains inordinately wealthy. The wrangle over the end of his marriage to Judy has made that clear. But his enemies, who might include the president, must be revelling quietly.

To an extent, Zuma’s announcement that Connie September would take over from Sexwale as Human Settlements minister brings to a close the present narrative of a former Robben Islander-turned-billionaire businessman-turned-public servant.

There were so many expectations, particularly after he stepped, Nelson Mandela-like, into the spotlight after Chris Hani’s assassination in 1993. Sexwale was the king of saying the right thing. And, possibly until the dirty linen starting tumbling from the rubble of his marriage, he was a darling of white South Africa.

But if he had nearly 25 years to reach the dizziest of political heights, he failed – at least in the ANC of the moment. Some say it was ego. But mostly, it seems Sexwale’s surprisingly poor political judgement, which his supporters may prefer to describe as honesty, led to his downfall.

Thanks to him allegedly not paying his workers particularly well on his Durbanville wine estate, Bloemendal, we now even know his reported wealth: R16.7 billion. Cosatu dubbed the R80 a day minimum, which was the same as most other farmers’, “slave wages”.

Yet that was a mere blip on the horizon of discontent. Rather, it was Sexwale’s decision to side with the Forces of Change faction and stand for a senior posting before the ANC’s elective conference at Mangaung in December last year that tilted the scales.

Sexwale made some public declarations, especially around his presidential ambitions, and this was anathema to many insiders, who believe it was anti-ANC.

“Tokyo wants to become the president by hook or by crook. We don’t need those types of leaders,” one source said, deriding Sexwale’s “uncontrollable ambition”.

Zuma’s closing address at Mangaung was all-embracing. He said it was important that delegates move beyond the election and unite the party. He warned against sidelining those who had lost. But instant analysis suggested that the president would reshuffle his cabinet after the crucial January cabinet lekgotla and his February State of the Nation address, and that Sexwale would be a casualty.

As predicted by many, this would be a careful process on Zuma’s part. He wouldn’t want to look as if he was taking revenge. But there was no brainwork in imagining Zuma would want to get rid of Sexwale, even if it took him six months. Sexwale had, after all, been bold enough to go up against him twice – the first time at the ANC’s elective conference in Polokwane in 2007.

Reported to have been approached by ANC stalwarts Pallo Jordan and Zola Skweyiya to put himself forward at Polokwane in order to offer an alternative to Zuma and the doomed Thabo Mbeki, Sexwale later withdrew. It was clear to all he could not win.

He was later quoted as saying: “Zuma approached me as well, because he felt he was being persecuted by Mbeki, who wanted to put him in jail. He didn’t want the presidency. That wasn’t his ambition then. And that is why I ran.”

But if Sexwale was among those cheering on the new president of the ANC after Polokwane, Mangaung was always going to be an even bigger gamble. Zuma was virtually assured of a landslide. Anyone who dared to take him on would surely fail. Yet Sexwale dared.

In the end, reporters wrote about how the Forces of Change group were mostly absent from the closing session of the conference. The inevitability of a Zuma win had wiped out even their bravado. All who had hoped for a top six position or, at least, a spot on the 80-strong national executive committee (NEC), left the Free State with nothing.

KwaZulu-Natal Premier Zweli Mkhize had even trumped Sexwale to the position of treasurer-general.

But losing his place on the NEC must have been especially painful for Sexwale, who had shone at number 10 at Polokwane. The NEC later replaced Sexwale with Joe Phaahla as convener for KwaZulu-Natal.

Sexwale earned a paltry 463 votes in his ill-fated bid to be deputy president at Mangaung, while the winner, Cyril Ramaphosa, got just over 3 000. Some observers noted how the mighty had fallen: 12 years ago, the late Steve Tshwete caused a stir when he shared the rumour that Ramaphosa, Sexwale and Phosa had been plotting against Mbeki. There was no evidence to support this.

But there was certainly evidence to support the contention that Sexwale was not the greatest Minister of human settlements. Perhaps he did have a real plan to deal with a devastating housing backlog that is expected to help erode the ANC’s majority at next year’s election. He had, of course, been given a lemon of a department by Zuma. Perhaps his attempts to clean up corruption in his department were solid. Perhaps he was indeed going after dirty individuals in the ANC itself who were benefiting from construction tenders.

Indeed, there was no hint that Sexwale himself had been involved in corruption, unlike former minister Dina Pule, who also got the chop on Tuesday.

But there wasn’t a great deal of happiness with his performance. Detractors said he had a penchant for setting up task teams and commissions which, in the end, seemed to achieve little. He was particularly lambasted during his time as minister for failing to made headway on the fraught sanitation issue. Although Sexwale made quite a show of presenting ANC MP Winnie Madikizela-Mandela to the media as his sanitation task team head, not much changed.

Then, in February, he was blasted by one of his own when ANC MP Nomhle Dambuza – who chairs the Human Settlements portfolio committee – expressed disappointment at his department spending R91 million on consultants. “You cannot appoint consultants for the sake of appointment,” she ranted.

In April, Sexwale tried to explain away the government’s “gap market” housing subsidy scheme, which had reached a mere 274 households in two years. Zuma had given it a special mention in his two State of the Nation addresses.

But it was when the Lenasia housing crisis took hold, that Sexwale really seemed to be battling with his portfolio.

About 120 illegally built houses were demolished, followed by violent protests. Residents claimed they had purchased the houses believing it was a legal sale. So Sexwale promised to sort it all out quickly and formed another task team. But, months down the line, negotiations had deadlocked and his task team had apparently not met for almost as long.

The DA was also after his blood in Parliament over the detested bucket toilet system. Mbeki had promised six years earlier that the system would be eradicated “within months”. But this year Sexwale had to admit that, due to “insufficient financial resources and a lack of technical and financial management skills at municipal level”, the government could no longer set a target date. Its last one was December 2012. Some 2.3 million households do not have proper sanitation.

So he’s out. He’s gone, yet maybe not dead and buried. Ousted ANC Youth League president Julius Malema may see an opportunity in Sexwale for his Economic Freedom Fighters. Agang may have a go.

But there’s still the unpleasantness of his divorce that lies ahead in the ashes of a marriage that once included the gift of an eight-seater Learjet for Valentine’s Day. Fortunately, he’s got a 23-year-old girlfriend to cheer him up.

But does anyone care?

*Janet Smith is a journalist at The Star

*The views expressed here are not necessarily those of Independent Newspapers.

Saturday Star

TOKYO SEXWALE: Meet The Billionaire Diamond Magnate Who Went To Jail With Nelson Mandela

STEVEN PERLBERG JUL. 9, 2013, 10:47 AM 8,120 3

tokyo sexwale
REUTERS/Mike Hutchings

Until today, billionaire South African Tokyo Sexwale (prounced "seh-wa-le," unfortunately) was the country's housing minister.
But Jacob Zuma's leadership shake-up saw Sexwale — the major anti-apartheid crusader and diamond mogul considered to be a political challenger to the president — removed from the cabinet.

Sexwale has a crazy life story to go with that name (the "Tokyo" moniker derives from his childhood love of karate).

In the late 1970s, he was charged with terrorism and conspiracy and sent to Robben Island where he met fellow political prisoner Nelson Mandela, who had been sent there 12 years prior.

Sexwale was released in 1990, and like something out a movie, he ended up marrying Judy van Vuuren, the paralegal that represented him while he was in prison.

When he came to power in 1994, Mandela named Sexwale premier of Gauteng province, the region home to both Johannesburg and Pretoria.

Sexwale would eventually leave politics for business, becoming a major oil and diamond mining magnate, though his name was floated as a possible successor to Mandela. That honor would go to Thabo Mbeki. In 2007, Sexwale reportedly planned to challenge Mbeki, but never did.

Things would also turn sour for Sexwale's marriage, scandalizing South Africa with a bitter divorce in February. It got ugly. Sexwale accused his wife of emailing out illegal hardcore pornography while she accused him of shielding his finances.

Those finances are impressive. Sexwale made an absolute fortune from his company, which was once lauded by fellow diamond tycoon Harry Oppenheimer. In 2009, Sexwale declared his wealth to be approximately $2 billion rand (nearly $200 million).

The divorce also helped shine some light on all of Sexwale's toys too: the requisite yacht, vineyards, Learjet, and even a $70 million island.

In 2009, Zuma appointed Sexwale as Minister of Human Settlements, but it was no secret that Sexwale still had presidential aspirations.

Now out of power, those ambitions will have to wait. At least this is his new girlfriend.

Read more:

1 comment:

  1. Brings back true memories of the period 1976 - 1978....

    Constable BRITZ AND SERGEANT KHOZA should have spent more time with these terrorists before loading them onto their Land Rover.......

    Pay Day was never the same after this incident again.