Former KZN agriculture head arrested on corruption charges for second time

Siphiwe Mkhize, the former head of department for the KwaZulu-Natal department of agriculture and rural development.
Siphiwe Mkhize, the former head of department for the KwaZulu-Natal department of agriculture and rural development.
Image: https://agriculture-horticulture.conferenceseries.com

Just more than three months after being arrested for corruption, the former head of the KwaZulu-Natal agriculture and rural development department, Dr Siphiwe Felix Mkhize, has been arrested again on graft charges.

The Hawks' serious commercial crime unit arrested Mkhize on Tuesday, along with a service provider whom the department allegedly paid R3.5m for hay that was never delivered.

Hawks spokesperson Capt Simphiwe Mhlongo said Mkhize was charged with his accomplice, Billy Mishack Mnisi, the owner of Tekisani Pty Ltd.

The two accused are facing charges of fraud and corruption pertaining to a payment of about R3.5m allegedly made to the company.

“It is alleged that Tekisani was supposed to deliver hay as part of drought relief programme to farmers in northern KwaZulu-Natal. However, the hay was not delivered. Mkhize, as the head of department, allegedly signed a proof of delivery and verified the payment.”

The pair appeared in the Durban specialised commercial crime court on Wednesday, where they were granted bail of R5,000 each. They are expected back in court on November 12.

In June this year, Mkhize was charged for allegedly receiving a gratification in a form of a motor vehicle worth R548,100. TimesLIVE reported that Mkhize and a service provider, Erick Zondi, 49, were arrested and appeared in the Durban magistrate's court on charges of corruption.

In that case, it was alleged that, from November 2016 to January 2017, Ikhwezi Protection Services, represented by Zondi, purchased a motor vehicle to the value of R541,800 from Kempster Ford Durban for Mkhize.

In 2018 TimesLIVE reported that Mkhize had resigned after he was suspended from the department for being implicated in a R5m fraud and corruption scandal involving various staff members‚ including those from supply chain management.

TimesLIVE


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