Corporate trickery - Sisulu linked to Chuene company 'theft'
FORMER president Nelson Mandela's lawyer Bally Chuene has allegedly hijacked a company linked to parliamentary speaker Max Sisulu.
Chuene, who is married to former beauty queen Augustine Masilela-Chuene, allegedly fraudulently registered himself as a director of Copper Sunset Trading 403 (Pty) Ltd, in which Sisulu owned shares.
Sisulu's spokesperson says the speaker has since withdrew from the company.
News that Chuene had allegedly hijacked the company came to the fore after Copper Sunset took its sister company Umthombo Resources to court, to force it to repay a R28m loan.
Sisulu's shareholding in Copper Sunset came to light in a lawyer's letter written to him in 2010, asking him to attend a meeting at which a new board of directors was appointed.
The letter reads in part: "The purpose of this letter is to seek your agreement to the appointment of Mr Vuslat Bayoglu, representing the interests of Umthombo, along with Mr James Matodzi Nesongozwi, (to) the board of directors of Copper Sunset."
Although it is not clear if Sisulu attended the meeting, Matodzi and Bayoglu were appointed.
But their relationship was short-lived with Nesongozwi seeking legal intervention.
A summons in Sunday World's possession showed that Chuene was registered as a director of Copper Sunset on November 9 last year. Nesongozwi alleged that Bayoglu, a Turkish businessman, who is an acquaintance of ANC veteran Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, smuggled Chuene into the company's directorship.
In his founding affidavit Nesongozwi says: "The deadlock between Bayoglu and myself led to an attempt by Bayoglu to remove me unlawfully as a director of the respondent (Umthombo Resources) and attempting to replace me as director of the respondent with Mr Paul Bally Makgweba Chuene, whose appointment date as director of the respondent was November 9, 2011.
"In addition to the purported appointment of Chuene and my unlawful removal as a director of Umthombo, Bayoglu has appointed himself and Chuene as directors of Copper Sunset. An application was launched by myself to set aside Chuene's purported appointment as a director of Umthombo. I was successful in the said (sic)".
Nesongozwi also alluded that he wanted repayment of about R28m to be transferred into Copper Sunset's account but his demands fell on deaf ears.
"In terms of the said letter, addressed to the respondent's representative, Tarik Imre, who is a general manager of Umthombo and appointed by Bayoglu, was alerted to the fact that Copper Sunset instructed by myself as its sole director, advising of an amount R28022838 which had been transferred over a period of two years from the account of Copper Sunset to that of Umthombo.
"The letter further demanded payment of the said amount within seven days of the date of the said letter together with 10% interest. The respondent failed and/or neglected to respond to the said letter."
Asked to comment, Nesongozwi says: "Who told you about that case? I have nothing to discuss with you about it."
Sisulu's spokesperson Sukhthi Naidoo says: "Sisulu used to be a shareholder of the company but has since withdrew from it."
Chuene ignored our calls and SMSes.