Zandile Gumede, corruption co-accused due back in court for pre-trial matters

The accused, who include private entities and municipal officials, allegedly colluded in a waste collection tender amounting to over R320 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/Eyewitness News.

DURBAN - Pre-trial proceedings in the fraud, corruption, money laundering and racketeering case against former eThekwini mayor, Zandile Gumede, and 21 others are expected to commence in the Durban High Court on Monday.

The accused, who include private entities and municipal officials, allegedly colluded in a waste collection tender amounting to over R320 million.

The matter was transferred from the Durban Magistrates Court in March where the State revealed that the accused collectively face 2,786 counts.

Gumede’s co-accused include eThekwini municipal manager Sipho Nzuza, as well as private entities and other municipal officials.

The former mayor has always maintained that she was innocent. In a previous address to her supporters, she has claimed that the case formed part of a smear campaign against the ANC.

"We are at war. This war is not targeting Zandile Gumede, it is the ANC that is under attack," she said speaking in IsiZulu.

She also suggested that she was facing charges because she was a strong woman leader.

“Even though the African National Congress we are told that we are equal to men and must be given opportunities, there are still people in South Africa who refuse to accept that I didn't insist on oppressing women."

She also claimed that opposing the case she was implicated in meant protecting the African National Congress (ANC).

"By taking a stand against cases like this, comrades in eThekwini and other regions will save the ANC."

Supporters of former eThekwini mayor Zandile Gumede said that they would be watching proceedings very closely.

Spokesperson for her supporters, Ntando Khuzwayo, said that they would gather outside court on Monday morning after having met with law enforcement officials.

"We are going to be out at court in solidarity with Zandiel Gumede and the other accused."

Khuzwayo said that they expected Gumede to address her supporters after Monday’s court proceedings provided that they adhered to COVID-19 regulations.

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