Embattled Hlongwa, Mahlangu re-elected to Gauteng ANC executive committee

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JOHANNESBURG, July 23 – Embattled Brian Hlongwa and Qedani Mahlangu have been elected again as members of the African National Congress (ANC) provincial executive committee, despite dark clouds hanging over their heads over alleged corruption and mismanagement in the provincial government.

Newly appointed ANC Gauteng deputy chairman, Panyaza Lesufi, on Monday said the conference, held in Pretoria over the weekend, discussed matters concerning Hlongwa and Mahlangu, and decided to ”allow processes” to take their course.

Mahlangu was in charge of health portfolio in Gauteng when the botched transfer of psychiatric patients from Life Esidimeni to NGOs led to 144 deaths. She tendered her resignation as health MEC in the aftermath of the tragedy.

Hlongwa is the subject of a damning Special Investigating Unit (SIU) report made public last month, implicating him in R1.2 billion of corrupt activities when he was provincial health MEC from 2006 to 2009.

The report was submitted to former president Jacob Zuma in March 2017 but was never made public until lobby group Section27 obtained it after submitting a Promotion of Access to Information Act (PAIA) request.

The 122-page report gave details of money given to Hlongwa to help purchase his R7.2 million house in Bryanston, Johannesburg.

The SIU report showed how “state capture” occurred when 3P, a private company, took over management functions within the Gauteng health department and awarded “fishy” tenders worth more than R1.2 billion, with alleged kickbacks to Hlongwa.

”The conference agreed that we must resolve these two matters a soon as possible. As the leadership, we are with this resolution, that there must be no stone left unturned, and leadership must be decisive, firm in dealing with these matters … ,” Lesufi told reporters at a briefing held at Luthuli House in Johannesburg.

“We are requesting society to give us some space [to deal with this] as we have just come out of conference and are meeting for the first time here.”

He added that ”no one will be shielded” as the party tackles the matters relating to the two politicians.

Re-elected Gauteng ANC Chairman and Premier David Makhura told reporters that the province would await the ANC integrity committee report and ”take it from there”.

He added: ”Conference is one process, the integrity committee is another … but they are both processes of the ANC.” (ANA)