Last week the Speaker of the City of Cape Town obtained evidence of meetings between Councillor Badih Chaaban and other City councillors (whose name will be withheld). Cllr Chaaban is recorded in various formats offering councillors business opportunities, money and well-paying positions in the City to cross the floor and join a new party, the National People's Party, that Chaaban claims is being formed.
According to sworn evidence from various sources, Cllr Chaaban states he is currently paying councillors between R5 000 and R10 000 per month up until the September floor-crossing period to join this new party.
Cllr Chaaban is also recorded threatening violence against any councillors who betray him.
And he has stated that he won't let the current government continue to run this City, and implied that he will have the balance of power to enter a coalition with the ANC.
In terms of Section 7 (b) of the Prevention and Combating of Corrupt Activities Act (12 of 2004), 'any person who, directly or indirectly, gives or agrees or offers to give any gratification to a member of the legislative authority ... in order to act, personally or by influencing another person so to act, in a manner - (ii) that amounts to - (aa) the abuse of a position of authority; (bb) a breach of trust ... is guilty of the offence of corrupt activities relating to members of the legislative authority'.
The Speaker of the City of Cape Town has laid a charge in terms of this Act with the South African Police Services. He is required to do so in terms of the Act.
In a letter to my office, the Speaker has also said that following the outcome of a forensic audit into the lease of Green Market Square, the City will also be taking legal action to recover approximately R3.3 million in arrears from Cllr Chaaban.
The Speaker has notified Cllr Chaaban of the criminal charges, and that further action may also be taken by the City in terms of the Code of Conduct for Councillors.
[APPENDIX A - LETTER TO THE MAYOR FROM THE SPEAKER]
The Executive Mayor
NOTIFICATION REGARDING INSTITUTING OF INVESTIGATIONS AND
AGAINST COUNCILLOR CHABAAN AND OTHER COUNCILLORS
I wish to inform you of the following -
(a) A forensic investigation into the leasing of the Green Market Square has revealed that Councillor Chabaan is in arrears with his lease payments in the amount of approximately 3,3 million. It has now been decided to institute the required legal steps to recoup the outstanding amount.
The investigation also revealed that a number of traffic fines issued in the name of Councillor Chabaan are unpaid, which must be settled. It would furthermore appear as if Councillor Chabaan's submitted Declaration of Interest does not reflect the true nature of his interests as required by law.
(b) I have also recently received information that implicates Councillor Chabaan in an alleged breach of the Prevention and Combating of Corrupt Activities Act, Act 12 of 2004 in that he has allegedly threatened and enticed a number of Councillors through threats of violence and monetary offers to join a party he intends establishing.
I am required in terms of the aforementioned act to submit this information to the South African Police Services and I am in the process of doing so.
(c) The above matters could be in contravention of the Code of Conduct for Councillors and I have instituted an investigation in this regard
(d) The information referred to in (b) above may implicate other councillors as well and this will also be investigated.
[APPENDIX B - LETTER TO CLLR CHAABAN FROM THE SPEAKER]
REPORTING OF ALLEGED IRREGULARITIES
I have recently received information that implicates you in an alleged breach of the Prevention and Combating of Corrupt Activities Act, Act 12 of 2004 in that you have allegedly threatened and enticed a number of councillors through monetary offers and threats of violence to join a party you intend establishing.
I am required in terms of the aforementioned act to submit this information to the SA Police Services and I am in the process of doing so.
As this may also lead to further investigations into a possible breach of the Code of Conduct for Councillors I will shortly revert to you in this regard.
[APPENDIX C: AFFADAVIT FOR CRIMINAL CHARGE]
Jacob Diederik Smit - states in English and under oath:
I am an adult male. My identity number is 460720 5040 080. I reside in Melkbostrand. I am employed by the City of Cape Town, 6th Floor, Podium Block, Civic Centre in 12 Hertzog Boulevard with contact numbers (021) 400 1287.
1. Currently I am Speaker for the City of Cape Town. One of the councillors and specifically the one related to this affidavit is Mr Badih Jamil Chaaban (Chaaban). Chaaban is employed as a councillor of the City of Cape Town.
2. During the month of February 2007, I appointed ENS Forensics to conduct an audit on Councillor Badih Jamil Chaaban. The purpose of this audit was to ascertain whether the City of Cape Town owes Badih Jamil Chaaban money or whether Badih Jamil Chaaban owes the City of Cape Town money. The result of the audit and the content was given to me in a report from ENS Forensics. Such information will be made available to parties concerned in this matter where deemed necessary by me.
3. On 16 April 2007, I certified an affidavit given by [ ]
In the affidavit - [ ] claimed several things he heard from a reliable source about Badih Jamil Chaaban. The most important claims, to my mind, which could affect the City of Cape Town, its structures and the safety of fellow councillors were claims that Chaaban is 'raising money from shady characters in Cape Town to facilitate the floor crossing in September. In short, the effect will be that Chaaban would unseat the present Mayor and Chaaban would take over from her as Mayor. [ ] further claimed that he heard that Chaaban would not hesitate, in a dispute, to kill his opponent.
4. Concerning the content of paragraph 3 of my affidavit, I confirm that it is possible that the floor crossing in September could unseat the present Mayor. Further should the funding of Chaaban come from shady characters and or persons linked to organized crime, or in point of fact if the funding he might receive or have received, originate from illegitimate business persons and he succeeds to be become the Mayor of Cape Town, he would have a debt to such persons. The person, persons or organisation who funded him to become the Mayor, would then control Chaaban. The effect can also be that crime syndicates actually run The City of Cape Town.
5. On Thursday 31 May 2007 [ ] came to my office and told me that Chaaban had approached other councillors to join him in his new party and made these councillors lucrative offers. [ ] said that they have audio evidence proving this. [ ] played the recording in order to substantiate the claims he made earlier. The tape recording is of a conversation between Chabaan and [ ] I told [ ] that I wanted a copy of the recordings for myself in order to listen to it properly at my own leisure and [ ] agreed to my request.
6. On Friday 01 June 2007 [ ] came to my office and copied the said recording onto a Compact Disk (CD). I took possession of the CD. Over the weekend of 2 and 3 June 2007 I listened to the recording that was copied onto the Compact Disk (CD) given to me by [ ] and I realised that it was not the full content I had heard.
On Monday 04 June 2007, I called [ ] and told him that I listened to the recording over the weekend and that the recording was not the same they had initially played to me.
I told [ ] that I wanted the full version that they played to me the first time and that as Speaker I need a copy to take this matter further as I heard more on the recording than simply Chaaban making a councillor a lucrative offer. Later the same day [ ] and an official returned to my office and copied the full recording onto a memory stick.
8. I listened to the recording and the following could be heard being said by Chaaban. He spoke about his political plans and that "everyone will see who is Mayor in September", how Chabaan enticed [ ] to join the new party, and the way that he would benefit politically. He also assured him that more councillors would be joining his new party in the floor crossing in September. Chaaban also claimed that he is currently paying councillors between R5 000 and R10 000 per month up until September when the floor crossing takes place. Chaaban also gave a simple breakdown of how he would go about doing the political move that he is planning.
9. Apart from the aspects I mentioned in par 8 supra the following was said by Chaaban: -
a) He spoke very defamatory about Helen Zille and Patricia de Lille and at a specific time calling them very slanderous names.
b) He also spoke badly of Cllr Simon Grindrod.
c) He said he had a lot of money invested and he will not let these bitches run the city.
d) He explained how in their country they blow up buildings to make a statement or get things done.
e) He said that Patricia de Lille made every f*ck up and called her a Coloured "Kaffer", he also said she is a "Hottentot Kaffer" shortly thereafter.
g) He said that he has a partner from the Chinese Mafia that was robbed of R1 200 000.00.
h) He spoke defamatory of South African Police Service and their bad policing and that he preferred to, in short, keep company with prostitutes.
i) He also said that he is involved with Moroccans in the nightclubs and explained how he wants to re-emerge them into the community.
j) He spoke about his friend from Johannesburg who owned a brothel named The Ranch and went on to explain how the fee structuring work and how the brothel ran.
k) He spoke about how he went to Mavericks in the past. To my knowledge Mavericks is a strip club in Barrack Street in Cape Town.
l) He also said that many people are involved in this project and a lot of money has been put into this project. He also said that if someone betrays them then they take the persons life away and the seat will anyway come back to them which they in turn will give to someone else. He said if they catch a rat they kill a rat.
m) He also paid [ ] money after several attempts to assure that it was just money to keep him going.
10. When listening to the defamatory statements against Patricia de Lille, Helen Zille and Simon Grindrod one must keep in mind that Badih Jamil Chaaban is a Councillor and a person with whom City of Cape Town is doing business and a person that is meant to set an example for other people.
Not only did he call them slanderous names, he spoke out in a racist manner against Patricia de Lille.
He clearly intimidated [ ] by explaining how in their country they blow up buildings. He spoke about a partner in the Chinese Mafia, his involvement with Moroccons and nightclubs, a friend who owns a brothel. Lastly, he directly intimidated [ ] by telling him that if someone betrays them they take the persons life. He also paid the fellow Councillor money.
I know and understand the content of this statement.
I have no objection to taking the prescribed oath.
I consider the prescribed oath to be binding on my conscience
So help me God.
Jacob Diederick Smit
I certify that the deponent has acknowledged that he knows and understands the content of this statement, which was sworn to before me on 2 June 2007 at 11h00
Commissioner of Oaths
12 JUNE 2007
CITY OF CAPE TOWN
TEL: 021 400 2201
FAX: 021 957 0023
CELL: 084 977 9888