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BBC suspends Danisa Baloyi amid missing R5m scandal

Dec 04 2017 10:35
Lameez Omarjee

Johannesburg - Danisa Baloyi has been suspended as president of the Black Business Council (BBC) pending the investigation of the missing R5m.

The announcement was made at a media briefing in Johannesburg after the BBC and the Airports Company SA (Acsa), the donor, still had conflicting versions of how a R5m donation to the business lobby seemingly disappeared.

Kganki Matabane, former COO and executive director of Sentech, takes up the position of CEO. He said that the BBC does not have "financial challenges" and that his role is to strengthen the organisation. 

Speaking at a media briefing at the BBC offices in Johannesburg on Monday, secretary general George Sebulela announced that the decision was taken at the BBC National Council meeting held on November 30.

The council has requested that Baloyi “refrain from any activity of the organisation in the name of the BBC” until the matter is resolved, said Sebulela. He added that the BBC has "capable leadership" and that there is no vacuum at all. 

During a question and answer session, Sebulela confirmed that there is “prima facie” evidence that Baloyi is implicated in the missing R5m. But he added that Baloyi is innocent until proven guilty and that she should have an opportunity to testify in the investigation.

In a statement on Friday, Acsa said the donation had been brokered by Baloyi and that her office specifically instructed that the money be paid to Merit Energy, an intermediary.

Other BBC officials were apparently unaware of this and approached Acsa for a donation in August, only to be told that they had already been sponsored generously just a few months earlier.

On Monday, chairperson Sello Rasethaba said Acsa had laid charges against Baloyi. 

Last week, City Press reported on how the Acsa donation had gone missing and how fundraiser Dominic Ntsele was being pursued for this cash by the BBC.

The BBC has, however, pressed criminal charges against both Ntsele and Merit Energy, which received the cash from Acsa on the BBC’s behalf, said Sebulela. The nature of charges is theft and fraud, said treasurer general Sindiswa Mzamo. 

Acsa claims it was explicitly instructed to pay the money to Merit Energy in a “formal written request ... by the BBC president to the CEO of Airports Company dated March 29 2017”.

As to why Acsa had deposited the donation in the wrong account, Sebulela said that the process of investigation should be completed rather than to speculate. “Where is the money? I wish I knew.”


READ THE FULL CITY PRESS STORY


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acsa  |  black business council  |  corruption  |  donations

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