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Gumede supporters worried about her political future amid fraud, corruption case

Former mayor Zandile Gumede faces fraud, corruption and racketeering charges linked to a waste collection tender amounting to R430 million.

Former eThekwini mayor, Zandile Gumede (front right) and some of her co-accused appear at the Durban Commercial Crimes Court in her corruption case on 10 December 2020. Picture: Nkosikhona Duma/EWN

KWAZULU-NATAL - Former mayor Zandile Gumede's supporters on Thursday said they were worried that delays in the corruption case against her would harm her chances of becoming re-elected as the African National Congress (ANC) chairperson in the eThekwini region.

Gumede faces fraud, corruption and racketeering charges linked to a waste collection tender amounting to R430 million.

She appeared in the Durban Commercial Crimes Court on Thursday where the matter was postponed to March next year following a request by the state.

Magistrate Dawn Somaroo granted a postponement in the case against Gumede and her 17 co-accused on the condition that the State would make full discovery to the defence on the next court date.

This meant the State will table the indictments, its forensic report and all annexures related to the matter - otherwise the case could be struck off the roll.

Gumede's supporters said while they were happy that there appeared to be progress in the case, they were worried about the political consequences for her.

Spokesperson Mzomuhle Dube said: “The extensions that are being requested do not make sense because they have nothing on the table. So ultimately what is it going to do? It’s going to assist other political matters, which will favour certain political rivals.”

At the same time, Dube said despite Gumede's legal and political challenges, she still had a high chance of becoming leader of the ANC in eThekwini again.

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