Premier dragged into graft uproar

Gauteng Premier Mbhazima Shilowa is to look into allegations of misconduct levelled at the provincial department of agriculture, conservation and environment.

Gauteng Premier Mbhazima Shilowa is to look into allegations of misconduct levelled at the provincial department of agriculture, conservation and environment.

Shilowa's office said yesterday that the premier had received allegations of misconduct against the department's MEC, Khabisi Mosunkutu, from the Democratic Alliance and had been asked to respond.

Last week DA spokesman Rika Kruger called for a probe into "suspicious" interventions regarding the granting of approval for some multimillion-rand developments. She said a 20-page report, compiled by the party and environmental groups, outlined numerous instances where Mosunkutu had favoured developers who had broken laws designed to protect the environment.

Among the developments Kruger cited was a petrol station in Boksburg, the Waters Edge development and Ebotse Golf and Country Estate in Benoni and the Blair Athol Estate.

Kruger estimated that the Blair Athol Golf Estate was worth more than R800million and the Ebotse development was worth more than R500 million.

Mosunkuntu was expected to respond to the claims by the end of next week.

"The premier will then decide on how best to handle the matter after studying both reports from the DA and from the MEC," Shilowa's office said. - Sapa

X