Limpopo tycoon lays criminal charges against business partners

Date: 16 Jun 2021

WELL-KNOWN Limpopo businessman Collen Mashawana, who recently made the news by building and giving away houses in his home province, has laid fraud and theft charges against two of his business partners, David Madisha and Themba Rikhotso.

The two were ordered to present themselves to the Hawks on June 7.

The three are members of Mokgolokwane Civils CC, which in turn has an agreement with the Gauteng Department of Human Settlements (GDHS) to build 4 000 houses in Palm Ridge.

The housing backlog in Gauteng is in the range of 200000 houses.

The Star has sent questions to the Minister of Human Settlements Lindiwe Sisulu over the matter.

Although the building of the houses in terms of Mashawana’s commitment to the GDHS is going according to plan, the businessman has asked the Hawks to investigate the fraudulent transfer of money out of the Mokgolokwane bank account by Madisha and Rikhotso.

The Star has seen the criminal complaint being investigated by the Specialised Commercial Unit of the Hawks and the allegations made in it.

Mashawana attached copies of bank statements showing millions of rand being transferred to entities he says have done no work on the project.

The Star sent questions to both Madisha and Rikhotso. Madisha responded with insults to The Star. “I don;t have time for nonsense, I an (am) a businessman… and don’t entertain rubbish for (from) you info. I can’t be intimidated by journalists like yourself. Get proper lawyers in the meantime, we will sue you big time,” Madisha added. One of the entities that received approximately R3 000 000 in 17 payments was Seruwane Investments CC.

The current owner of this business is Raisibe Tshetshe Seoka.

It was unknown what work Seoka performed for Mokgolokwane Civils justifying the payment.

Another entity that scored big in payments from Mokgolokwane’s account was Purple Ink Construction, which belonged to Rikhotso’s wife, Lyzanne, and their son, Masana.

Mashawana, in his criminal complaint, alleges that there is no reason why the mother and teen son had to be paid R2 264 000 in just a few months.

Numerous other payments were made from the Mokgolokwane bank account. A massive R10 433 609 was paid to “Gyers and Electrical” in six months last year.

The Hawks have confirmed to The Star that they were investigating the pair.

Rikhotso and Madisha have been asked by the Hawks to provide warning statements for the National Prosecuting Authority to consider the matter.

At about 5pm yesterday Rikhotso made a call to The Star’s editor explaining that the matter was in court.

“I respect the profession of journalists and I’m available to answer questions,” a calm Rikhotso said.

“Mokgolokwane Civils is a big entity… the companies you (are) talking about here are just 1% of the companies we pay every month and these amounts might date back from 2018.

“The person who gave you this information is misleading you because the matter is in court now. You can go ahead with your story if it pleases you. I can’t get to your 6 deadline. I will challenge your story in court,” Rikhotso’s response to our email read.

This is a developing story.

SIFISO MAHLANGU sifiso.mahlangu@inl.co.za Collen Mashawana

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