Umzimvubu ward councillor heads a municipal department with criminal record.

“He was found guilty of assaulting a woman but still leads a very important department of the Municipality”

It seems as if the Finance department of the Umzimvubu Municipality in the Eastern Cape has been led by a criminal since the year 2018 if the police report seen by the informer is the thing to go by. Police records seen by the informer reveal that Happy Ngqasa who is the portfolio head of the Treasury Department at this municipality was convicted of assaulting a woman in 2018.

According to sources the report only surfaced and was only made known to the political leadership of the municipality two weeks ago after complainants and witnesses in the case approached the leadership asking “Why are you allowing your department to be led by a criminal”? One of the witnesses in the case was Nonkumbulo Mvuzani who told the informer that Ngqasa was sentenced for assault GBH by the Mt Frere Magistrate court.

The report was also confirmed by Mzukisi Ntuthu who said he was the complainant in the case as he was also assaulted by Ngqasa. Mvuzani said the incident happened on the 2nd of February 2016 at Mt Frere town hall. She said young people were convened in the town hall to elect the leadership of the South African Youth Council.

According to her, the meeting was chaired by the Provincial Secretary of the South African Youth Council Ayanda Mafunda then. “When Mafunda was busy counting the votes Ngqasa came inside the hall advanced straight to the stage where the secretary was busy with votes. He did not ask any questions but hit Mafunda in the face using his fist. She fell down from stage to the floor as a consequence her phone was destroyed and she complained about pains in the waist and legs,” said Mvuzani. She said when they were trying to intervene one of their colleagues, Mzukisi Ntuthu was hit by a chair. Both Ntuthu and Mafunda opened a case and Ngqasa was charged for Assault with Grievously bodily harm.

In an interview, Ntuthu collaborated with Mvuzani ‘s story. He said that the case took about two years to be completed as a result Ngqasa was sentenced to three months imprisonment or acknowledgment of guilt or an R5000 fine. In an interview, Ayanda Mafunda said she won’t comment on this matter as it happened a long time ago. The informer has seen the police record about the case. According to the records Happy Mzikayise Ngqasa was charged with assault with the purpose of inflicting grievously bodily harm. The records said this was done by use of force and a chair. He was found guilty of the charges and was sentenced to three months imprisonment with an option of a fine of R5000. During his sentencing, Ngqasa was already deployed as a councilor at the Umzimvubu Local Municipality as a portfolio head of finance.

It is not clear whether he declared the criminal record to the ANC that deployed him. The Informer phoned Ngqasa to get his side of the story on the matter but he said he is not going to comment. ANC Regional Convenor Vukile Mhlelembana did not respond to questions sent to him about the matter. Mvuzani also told the informer that they have written to the provincial secretary of the ANC Lulama Ngcukayithobi but he did not confirm receiving the letter when we enquired.

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