He was arrested for driving drunk in Cape Town

Waghied Misbach and Sapa

Waghied Misbach and Sapa

Former ANC chief whip Tony Yengeni faces another three- and-a-half year spell in jail after he was arrested in Cape Town on Sunday evening for alleged drunken driving.

Officers at Goodwood police station confirmed that Yengeni was arrested after his black BMW swerved and landed on an island in Giel Basson Drive. Police arrived on the scene and smelt alcohol on his breath.

Yengeni denied he had been drinking, but said he had taken flu medicine. He was arrested and taken for blood tests.

The ANC stalwart was detained at the Goodwood police station for about four hours before being granted R500 bail. He is due to appear in court on March 19 on charges of drunken driving.

Yengeni is out on parole after serving five months of a four-year sentence for defrauding Parliament by failing to disclose a 47percent discount he received on a luxury German 4x4 vehicle from a company involved in the arms deal.

Yengeni may not drink alcohol or use drugs while out on parole.

African Christian Democratic Party's justice spokesman Steve Swart said Yengeni faced having his parole rescinded and would have to serve out the rest of his four-year sentence if convicted of drunken driving. Swart said the drunk driving allegation was "more serious than mere usage" of alcohol, which is expressly forbidden under his parole conditions.

Correctional Services spokesman Manelisi Wolela said yesterday that Yengeni's parole officer would have to investigate the matter before any action could be taken.

Yengeni could not be reached yesterday at the time of going to print.

He was released earlier this year on a two-year correctional supervision after serving 20 weeks in jail. His early release was widely criticised by opposition parties, who claimed he had been given preferential treatment.

This is not Yengeni's first run-in with the law over his drinking. Last October he was photographed with a beer bottle in his hand at his home in Milnerton while on a weekend pass from Malmesbury Prison. Prisoners are not allowed to drink.

He returned late to the prison, but was never tested for alcohol use.