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ANC's Bongo Nombiba suffers legal blow, might not attend motion against Trollip

Aug 13, 2018
ANC's Bongo Nombiba suffers legal blow, might not attend motion against Trollip

Disgraced Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality African National Congress (ANC) Councillor, Bongo Nombiba, is expected back in prison after the Grahamstown High Court declined his petition that he be allowed to appeal his conviction and sentence for fraud.

His remaining legal option is now to petition the Supreme Court of Appeals.

Nombiba was granted R2 000 bail by the Port Elizabeth Commercial Crimes Court at the beginning of July.

He was serving a five-year jail sentence at the St Albans Correctional Facility, just outside Port Elizabeth, after the court found him guilty of fraud and money laundering in March. 

Nombiba, from Kwazakhele, was accused of swindling the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality of the money, which was part of a donation to an organisation caring for the elderly. He first appeared in court in December 2016.

According to the State, a Secretary of a local non-governmental organisation (NGO) called Thulamangwane Community Project that renders services such as caring for elderly people and cleaning schools in the community, Zukiswa Mbhem, and Deputy Chairperson, Mandisa Monco, with other members, approached the Councillor to request a R10 000 donation from the municipality as financial assistance for the NGO.

It is alleged that Nombimba instructed the group to put their request in writing, but not to mention the amount that they had requested, which they did in September 2014.

The State claims that Nombiba then forwarded the request to the Metro for an amount of R30 000, which was apparently meant for the organisation.

In November 2014, the Metro deposited R30 000 into the NGO's Standard Bank Account. However, Nombiba told the NGO that of the R30 000 deposited - R10 000 was what the NGO requested and the R20 000 was his.

That is when the fraud came to light.

Several ANC members, including councillor, Andile Lungisa, were at the court to welcome Nombiba when he was released on bail ahead of the petition.

Lungisa himself was released in May on a R10 000 bail after serving only 16 days of his two-year sentence at the North-end Prison. Lungisa was convicted on a charge of assault with the intent to cause Grievous Bodily Harm (GBH), was sentenced to three years behind bars at the beginning of May. 

Lungisa faced charges of assaulting Democratic Alliance (DA) councillor, Rano Kayser, and allegedly smashed a glass jug filled with water over Kayser’s head during a brawl that broke out a Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality council meeting in October 2016.

This does not look well on the oposition parties that are hoping to remove Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality Executive Mayor, Athol Trollip, and the Democratic Alliance (DA) led coalition through motions of confidence on Thursday.

The opposition parties combined have 61 seats in the 120-seat Council while the DA-led coalition has 59 seats combined. With Nombiba's attendance of that Council Meeting in doubt, the opposition have a slight majority - and judging by events at previous motions against Trollip, things have had a way of turning out his favour.