South African Ex-Security Minister Issued New Warrant of Arrest

South Africa’s police issued a new warrant of arrest for Bongani Bongo, a former state security minister who was charged with corruption last year and is currently out on bail.

Bongo, who was apprehended in November 2019 in a bribery case, confirmed by phone that he’ll appear at a court in the northeastern city of Mbombela on Wednesday alongside his brother, Sipho. Bongo said he understands the new warrant relates to his time in the Mpumalanga provincial government, where he was legal adviser to the human settlements department.

The former minister was one of the first high-profile officials to be targeted in anti-graft crackdown announced by President Cyril Ramaphosa, who came to power in 2018 vowing to clean up the ruling African National Congress. Ramaphosa has estimated that more than 500 billion rand ($31 billion) was stolen from state companies and government departments during his predecessor Jacob Zuma’s nine-year tenure.

Besides Zuma, who is facing graft charges relating to an arms deal dating back to the 1990s, and Bongo, who served in his cabinet, no other senior politicians have been apprehended.

Bonga has been accused by police officials of drafting contracts for the purchase of farms for inflated values. He has denied all charges and continues to retain his seat in parliament and chair its home affairs committee, despite the ANC’s National Executive Committee asking all members who face legal charges to step aside from their duties.

©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

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