Hamilton Ndlovu fights bid to declare contracts for Covid-19 PPE invalid

The Special Tribunal on Thursday heard an application whereby the Special Investigating Unit (SIU) and the National Health Laboratory Services  (NHLS) seek an order declaring the invalidity of the R172m personal protective equipment (PPE)  contract awarded to Hamilton Ndlovu’s businesses during the Covid-19 pandemic.

The SIU said its investigation uncovered a web of inter-linked entities, all purporting to operate independently. However, the entities were all the alter-ego of Ndlovu.

The investigation determined the entities which conducted business with the NHLS for PPE, upon receipt of the NHLS funds, transferred the money to Ndlovu and entities linked to him.

In March last year, the Pretoria high court made final a provisional order the SA Revenue Service had obtained against Ndlovu to freeze a number of his bank accounts containing R102m and seize some of his luxury cars.

Ndlovu leapt into the public domain in May 2020 after posting video footage online and boasting about buying a fleet of luxury vehicles worth about R11m. The fleet included three Porsche vehicles, a Jeep and a Lamborghini Urus SUV.

The Special Tribunal also granted a preservation order against Ndlovu freezing an amount of R42m.

In his submissions on behalf of the SIU and the NHLS, advocate Barry Roux SC submitted there was no bona fide intention to supply the PPE to meet the requirements, and the purpose of the front companies in entering the transactions was to enrich Ndlovu.

Matlhaba Manala, advocate for Ndlovu and Hamilton Holdings, said the quality of evidence submitted by the SIU and the NHLS in its case was suspect.

He said the matter may be discharged.

Manala said the PPE was submitted and delivered.

The tribunal reserved judgment.

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