The National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) gave Moroadi Cholota a written assurance that its attention in her was only as a witness and that she was not a "future accused" in its attempt to entice her to testify against her former boss, suspended ANC secretary-general Ace Magashule, in the Free State asbestos case.
However, state prosecutor Johannes De Nysschen has recently reversed his position when Cholota, a former assistant to Magashule in the Free State premier's office, declined to incriminate him in wrongdoing. Cholota is also facing an extradition request from the United States, where she is studying on a scholarship while the Free State government supports her living expenses.
She told the news last week that she was charged on the spot with corruption, fraud, and money laundering in relation to the mismanaged R255 million Free State asbestos audit tender after she refused to submit to "intimidation" tactics from the Hawks and the FBI, who tried to get her to sign a pre drafted statement on issues she didn't know about. Cholota exchanged at least six emails with the Hawks and the NPA last November in an effort to determine the basis for the court's belief that she was a state witness in the asbestos case without her knowledge.
Cholota's supporters saw the charges against her as "a vindictive move by the authorities because they were unable to co-opt her in their political trial against Magashule," who was suspended as secretary-general of the ruling ANC in May pending the conclusion of the criminal case against him on the same charges of fraud, corruption, and money laundering. The state claimed that Magashule benefited from funds contributed to pupils in need for school expenditures by corporations who conducted business with the Free State government.
The business that won the asbestos tender also gave money to the pupils. Cholota, as Magashule's assistant, was involved in obtaining monies on behalf of students who sought the premier's office for assistance. Magashule's defense team had requested that the NPA specify which witnesses will testify against him, but De Nysschen told the court last week that the state had refused to release the list. Please let us know what you think about Magasgule's case on the comment section below, do not forget to like, share and follow for more updates.
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