South Africa`s house official up against detention denies receiving bribes


(MENAFN) South Africa's parliamentary speaker, Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula, is embroiled in a legal battle as she faces the looming threat of arrest on charges of corruption. Despite her attempts to block impending arrest, a court ruling on Tuesday rejected her application, paving the way for potential charges to be brought forward by prosecutors.

Mapisa-Nqakula stands accused of accepting bribes totaling USD135,000 over a span of three years during her tenure as defense minister. Among the allegations is the acceptance of a wig as a bribe, claims which she vehemently denies. The charges stem from an alleged incident in February 2019, where it is purported that she received over USD15,000 and the wig during a meeting at an international airport in South Africa.

Furthermore, prosecutors contend that the politician may have solicited an additional bribe amounting to USD105,000, which was allegedly not paid. The alleged presenter of this purported bribe is reported to be a representative of the country's defense forces.

Recent reports have shed further light on the investigation, indicating that the Investigating Directorate (ID) is delving into accusations that Mapisa-Nqakula received substantial cash bribes from a defense-forces contractor. It is alleged that she received a payment exceeding USD122,000 (2.3 million rand) via gift bags filled with cash from Nombasa Ntsondwa-Ndhlovu, a prominent figure in the defense sector who is also the spouse of a military general.

In her defense, Mapisa-Nqakula has sought legal recourse to challenge the validity of the search-and-seizure warrant issued by the Investigating Directorate, as well as the conduct of the operation carried out at her Johannesburg residence. Additionally, she has requested access to the evidence held against her by the prosecution, as she vehemently maintains her innocence amidst mounting legal scrutiny and public outcry.

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