THE OFFICIAL ANC NEWSPAPER

Mahumapelo imposter gets suspended sentence

The African National Congress (ANC) in Bokone Bophirima welcomed the sentence imposed on fraudster, Thato Hengari, who pretended to be ANC Provincial Chairperson and the province’s Premier, Supra Mahumapelo. 

Hengari (25) was arrested by the Hawks in Kuruman last year on charges of fraud after he had approached several people asking for money, under the pretence that he was Mahumapelo. He was found guilty by Mahikeng Regional Court and was last week sentenced to five years’ imprisonment. 
 
The sentence was, however, suspended for three years on condition that Hengari is not found guilty of the same offence or any offence involving dishonesty in the period of
his sentence.

ANC Deputy Provincial Secretary, Sussana Dantjie, said the party welcomes “the guilty plea and sentencing of a fraudster who had on several occasions robbed some people of their money, under the pretence that he was our Chairperson, Cde Supra Mahumapelo”. 

Dantjie said the ANC was happy with the finalization of the case and the sentence imposed on
Hengari. 

“We hope that this will deter other people who think it’s acceptable to tarnish people’s names, especially leaders of the society such as Cde Supra. We have on several occasions mentioned that there are consistent efforts to smear the name of our Provincial Chairperson and this is one of the cases that show just how far some people are prepared to go to create unnecessary havoc,” she said.

The Deputy Provincial Secretary said the ANC provincial leadership’s “faith in the Justice System” continues to be strengthened. “We believe that any other similar case that may come up would be treated with the same care”.

Mahumapelo also welcomed the sentence, in his capacity as Bokone Bophirima Premier. 
 
“I reiterate my confidence in the justice system of this country. This must be a lesson to the accused that crime does not pay. I am happy that the law has taken its course. Hengari concocted stories to extract money from people pretending to be acting under my instructions in some instances. 
 
“A Member of Parliament (MP) in the Western Cape became suspicious of Hengari and contacted my office to alert us about Hengari’s moves. He also admitted that he knew he was not acting under my instructions and that his actions were unlawful,” Mahumapelo said.

This is not the first time a conviction is secured against a person who either uses Mahumapelo’s name to commit crime or threatens his life. 

A former ANC councilor, Gaasite Legalatladi, was in October last year sentenced to five years' imprisonment after the Lehurutshe Magistrate's Court found her guilty of attempted conspiracy to commit murder and incitement to commit murder. These two counts were taken as a combined charge. Legalatladi was arrested in December 2014 for consulting a traditional healer in Masebudule asking him to help her kill Mahumapelo and other ANC leaders. 
In a different case, an ANC Ward 13 councillor in Mahikeng Local Municipality, Ditebogo Molema, is out on R3000 bail after he was arrested for sending a death threat message to Mahumapelo. 

The ANC Provincial Chairperson has cautioned those who continue with a smear campaign against him to refrain from doing that.