Pumelele Ntaba (54) the Headman of Ngxaza Administration Area under Hlubi Traditional Council in Tsolo was arrested by the Mthatha based Hawks’ Serious Commercial Crime Investigation team on 28 February 2023 for allegations of fraud.
It is alleged that on 11 July 2017, Ntaba unlawfully, falsely and with an intent to defraud, wrote a letter to the Department of Mineral Resources (DMR) stating that he was the Chief of Ngxaza-Hlubi Traditional Council and the Head of the Council.
He allegedly claimed that he was authorised to support the application for mining rights by Lakhanya Logistics CC to do mining in the same area.
DMR approved the application for mining based on the strength of the letter written by Ntaba and Lakhanya Logistics CC continued with the mining business.
The rightful Chief of Ngxaza-Hlubi Traditional Council and the Head of the Council reported the matter to the Hawks for investigation which led to the subsequent arrest of Ntaba.
Ntaba appeared shortly in the Mthatha Specialised Commercial Crimes Court on the same day of his arrest where he was released on R2000 bail.
The matter was adjourned to 23 March 2023 to set a trial date.