Johannesburg - The SA Revenue Service (Sars) has slammed a controversial North
West tenderpreneurship company with a whopping R136m tax bill after it
uncovered that the firm had fraudulently claimed R38m in tax returns.
City Press is in possession of a R136m final letter of
demand that Sars issued against Peolwane Properties.
The taxman wants Peolwane Properties to pay the money
immediately or face action.
The Sars action is a sequel to the South Gauteng High Court
finding that one of the company’s two shareholders, Lambert Kagisho Lobelo, was
a “delinquent director” after he oversaw the fraudulent payment of R38m to his
The court agreed with Lobelo’s business partner, Reginald
Kukama, and found that Lobelo had been guilty of “wilful misconduct, breach of
trust and a gross abuse of his position as a director”.
Lobelo has appealed against the decision.
Now Kukama wants the entire bill to be footed by his
partner, Lobelo, whom he says was submitting the invoices without his
(Kukama’s) consent or knowledge.
Lobelo and Kukama co-own Peolwane Properties and Diphuka
Constructions, and have equal stakes in each. Lobelo is director of Diphuka and
ordinary shareholder of Peolwane. The roles are reversed at Peolwane.
Sowetan newspaper reported earlier this month that an
auditing firm was currently conducting a forensic investigation into the
controversial awarding of a multimillion rand tender to a company owned by the
two men, Tau Pride, for the construction of a community health centre in
Rustenburg, North West.
The R108m project in Tlhabane was due to be completed before
the start of the 2010 World Cup.
The court found that between December 2010 and May 2011,
Sars made two value-added tax refund payments of R22 715 909 and R39 023 656 to
the banking account of Diphuka Construction Limited, which was not due to the
By paying the R39m, which was made up of fictitious tax
invoices, the company in effect claimed that it had spent just more than R278m
more than it had on the road projects.
Kukama’s argument before court was that though he was a 50%
shareholder, Lobelo was sole director of Diphuka at the time and had authorised
the payments, which were lawfully due to Peolwane, be paid into Diphuka. The money
was never used for Peolwane.
Kukama had argued that Lobelo had hired tax consultancy firm
Royal Alliance without his consent.
Lobelo told City Press that as far as he was concerned, Sars
was still investigating the case and had not made a finding.
Sars spokesperson Adrian Lackay this week confirmed that the
matter was reported to Sars.
“We view the alleged fraud as a very serious offence and
further arrests may be imminent,” said Lackay.
- City Press