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AFU secures R43m preservation order related to DRC embassy fraud


The Asset Forfeiture Unit (AFU) has secured a preservation order of more than R43m relating to a case of fraud and theft by the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) against their former Defence Attache’ to South Africa, Brigadier Ngoy Timothee Makwamba.

The order, which includes four properties and two bank accounts, one of which had a balance of R35m was served on Tuesday.

In a statement released by the NPA's Regional Spokesperson for Gauteng, Lumka Mahanjana, it says one of the duties assigned to Makwamba by the Ministry of Defence of the DRC was to purchase weapons from the Denel Group.

The Denel Group is a state-owned, commercially driven company and strategic partner for innovative defence, security, and related technology solutions in South Africa.

According to the NPA, the DRC embassy made a payment of R49,6 million to the Denel group.

However, the Denel Group could not process the order and arranged to pay back the money to the DRC embassy.

Makwamba allegedly fraudulently represented himself to Denel as the delegated representative of the DRC, even though his contract and his mandate to represent the country ended in December 2022.

"He was still a signatory of the Defence account of the DRC and had the authority to instruct them on where to make the refund payment.

"Brigadier Ngoy then provided the Denel Group with bank account details belonging to Johan van Heerden Attorneys where the Denel Group paid the refund of R49.6 million on 13 April 2023," said the NPA in its statement.

The funds were then transferred to the two accounts which have now been frozen.

The money used to purchase the properties was also taken from the accounts.

Makwamba is alleged to have registered the properties under his name, that of his children, and other persons from the DRC.

The four properties are now placed under the control of Curator Bonis.

The AFU's next step is to apply for the final forfeiture order.

Once obtained, the properties will be sold at a public auction and the money returned to the DRC.