Two senior African National Congress (ANC) leaders in Limpopo have resumed their duties almost two years after being suspended by the party for being implicated in the VBS Mutual Bank scandal.
In a statement on Tuesday, the ANC Limpopo provincial executive committee (PEC) confirmed that deputy provincial chairperson Florence Radzilani and provincial treasurer Danny Msiza are officially back in office.
This follows a decision by the ANC National Executive Committee (NEC) in July to allow the two to resume their duties. The NEC held consultations with stakeholders and community representatives before implementing the decision.
“The PEC accepts the decision of the NEC and welcomes the two comrades to continue from where they left off. This will help to further the mandate of the last Provincial Conference where these comrades were elected together with the entire collective.
“Their resumption of duties and responsibilities will, to a large measure, assist in our efforts to bring about stability in the ANC in the province,” ANC provincial secretary Soviet Lekganyane said.
VBS collapsed in 2018 following reports that over R2 billion had allegedly been siphoned from it. The Great Bank Heist, an investigative report authored by Advocate Terry Motau and commissioned by the Prudential Authority in 2018, implicated Msiza and Radzilani in the scandal.
The report alleged that Msiza had used his political influence to convince Limpopo mayors and municipal officials to “invest” hundreds of millions of rand in VBS.
It also claimed that Radzilani had allegedly received R300,000 from VBS directors after Vhembe municipality deposited money there when she was the mayor. Both denied the allegations and “stepped aside” from their ANC positions from November 2018 until now.
Adverse findings set aside
In August, Msiza succeeded in his court application to set aside the report’s adverse findings against him. The Pretoria high court ruled that Motau’s failure to afford Msiza the right to procedural fairness prior to releasing the report was “unlawful and unconstitutional and violated [Msiza’s] right in terms of section 34 of the Constitution.”
Msiza told SABC News at the time that he was “humbled” by the outcome. “There is a deep sense of relief. I always maintained my innocence and always conducted myself as an ethical businessman,” he said.
The Prudential Authority however indicated that it would file an appeal “following the Senior Counsel’s advice that there are good grounds to appeal the judgment.”
The ANC’s alliance partners – the Congress of SA Trade Unions and SA Communist Party – have strongly opposed Msiza and Radzilani’s reinstatement until they clear their names.