At the centre of it: VBS Mutual Bank in Thohoyandou, Limpopo. Picture: ANTONIO MUCHAVE/SOWETAN
At the centre of it: VBS Mutual Bank in Thohoyandou, Limpopo. Picture: ANTONIO MUCHAVE/SOWETAN

The board of the Community Schemes Ombud Service (CSOS) has served a possible suspension letter to its chief ombud Adv Seeng Letele‚ and CFO Themba Mabuya‚ amid allegations they were grossly negligent‚ dishonest, and in dereliction of duty in their investment of surplus funds into VBS Bank.

They also stand accused of failing to provide relevant information to the board relating to other investments. The board has given Letele and Mabuya until Thursday to make representations about their suspension.

In a statement on Wednesday‚ the CSOS board said it is investigating the allegations "with a view to possibly instituting disciplinary proceedings".

Board chair Rev Vukile Mehana said: "The board is interested to receive representations from Letele and Mabuya, but should we not receive [them] in the stipulated time‚ the board will proceed to suspend [them] without their submissions."

In June‚ the Mail & Guardian reported on allegations that the recently established CSOS had invested R80m with the controversial VBS Mutual Bank without approval.

Letele was named as chief ombud‚ effective April 2017‚ on secondment from the department of human settlements where she was in charge of the legal department. CSOS is the regulatory authority for all community schemes in SA, such as those overseeing sectional title properties. Its mission is "to facilitate and maintain a world-class dispute resolution service to promote good governance of community schemes".

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