The robbery attempt took place exactly one block away from a recent CIT robbery in which two cash vans were blown up during the robbery.
One of the bandits was shot dead and a guard injured during the shootout.
Armed cash-in transit robberies, which lead to shoot-outs resembling a movie scene from the film Heat (1996) are common place in South Africa, and not always newsworthy.
On May 23, 2018, I wrote an article for the Renegade Tribune called “Armed South African Gangsters Blow Up Cash-in-Transit Van During Heist,” that article is a must read.
I have it posted on my blog, please check it out:
I didn’t include in my article the rumors of off-duty police being accomplices in this robberies but I would have never thought a ANC member would be a suspect.
Errol Velile Present whom for years lived a double life by a day as active political member in the ANC party cadre, he even took steps to put his name forward for the chairperson position of a Gauteng sub-region.
That is Present’s carefully craft façade of being a responsible man of the people because when day becomes night, Present is a gun toting Black South African gangster that robs what we call in the US, “armored cars”.
Armored cars carry money to deposit to banks and in South Africa they are called cash-in-transit.
The 33-year-old Present, who was employed at ANC’s Luthuli House headquarters for 12 years is no long an ANC employee, he was fired by the ruling party on July 18, 2018 for his alleged involvement in a cash-in-transit heist in Soweto, Johannesburg.
Present role in Luthuli House that he was part of national audit committee with the task of digging into party membership irregularities.
Allow me to reiterate: a former ANC employee who worked as an auditor and watchdog against corruption in the SA government robbed Luthuli House ‘cash-in-transit’ at gun point outside of his work place. A tale-tell sign of the level of corruption in South African politics.
The committee at Luthuli House has recommended that the ANC Western Cape provincial executive committee to be dissolved over corruption and fraud.
Who would thought that the man tasked with uncovering corruption and fraud in the party is now facing jail time over cash-in-transit heists.
ANC is continuous accused of not giving young leaders a chance in the party, Present echoed those claims when describing the JHB conference.
“Could we please have our conference as young people of JHB it can’t be that we have old youth speaking for us as if we are in Zim. We at the verge of exploding and turn to be barbaric. Kuncono sihlulane thina basha but at the end we’ll be led by our pears young deserving YL [Youth League].”
“..We at the verge of exploding and turn to be barbaric…” Present thinks that he only at the verge of exploding and turn to be barbaric. What about all those Cash-in transit vehicle that you blow up, Present? Not to mention the cash-in transit armed guards that are killed in these heists, that is acting barbaric!
Mail and Guardian reported on July 18, 2018
The ANC added that it would begin the process of instituting disciplinary proceedings against Present, in accordance with Rule 25 of the ANC constitution.
Rule 25.56 and Rule 25.57 will allow Present to explain why the ANC should not temporarily suspend his membership pending the outcomes of a disciplinary proceeding.
In the US, it would be surreal to hear a story of Jeff Sessions aides pulling a “Patrick Swayze” by putting on a Reagan mask with a Freedom Arms Model 83 in hand to rob a bank with rest of his the Ex-Presidents gang.
Present was one of four bandits arrested after a heist in Soweto during a police raid by Johannesburg Metropolitan Police Department and the South African Police Services.
“The raid was conducted by a joint operation of the JMPD’s K9 narcotics unit and the SAPS. Four hijacked vehicles were recovered‚ two of which were used in the robbery. I have received confirmation that one of the four suspects arrested is alleged to work at Luthuli House‚ at the time of his arrest‚” said Johannesburg mayor Herman Mashaba.
Now, he and the other 3 bandits are facing charges from the armed robbery and possession of hijacked motor vehicles.
News24 reported the other suspects name are Zakhele Zondi (37,) Itumeleng Manama, (40,) and Bheki Biyela (36,) these Bandits including Present were arrested on July 6 and 7.
Four hijacked vehicles were recovered, two of which were apparently used in the heist outside the Capitec Bank on Elias Motsoaledi Road in Soweto earlier this month.
The suspects are believed to have gotten away in a white Ford Ranger and a silver Volvo sedan with an undisclosed amount of cash.
July 24, Times Live (a SA newspaper) reported that “22 others in a police raid two weeks ago which saw officers nab other heist suspects, seize rifles, explosives and bulletproof vests and recover hijacked vehicles.”
Sowetan Live reported on July 18, 2018.
A crackdown on cash-in-transit robberies‚ driven by police minister Bheki Cele‚ has resulted in numerous arrests that have revealed suspects from a variety of backgrounds. It was reported earlier how police had smashed a syndicate arresting 23 people in raids across Pretoria and Johannesburg‚ including a Tshwane metro policewoman.
The party claims that it will to institute disciplinary proceedings against Present.
“The ANC on 18th of July 2018, served Errol Velile Present with a letter of summary dismissal from its employ following his arrest and appearance in court on allegations of a number of heinous crimes. The ANC expects from its members and employees to respect the laws of the land and not be involved in any criminal activity,” said the party’s spokesperson Pule Mabe.
Present has since appeared in court and is expected to apply for bail along with three other suspects at the end of this month.
Bongani Bingwa (a famous SA radio host on Talk Radio 702) on Thursday morning interviewed Police Minister Bheki Cele.
“The arrest of Errol Velile Present is the of just another criminal. What we have established is that Velile is linked to another cash heist [that happened] before this, other cases and drunken driving,” Cele continues..
“This is almost his third cash heist, this guy. It is not the first one. Two are in the North West, plus this one (Soweto). Indeed, we have established who he is. He works for the organizing department on a temporary basis at Luthuli House,” Cele said.
Present is another black-eye and indication of the level of corruption in the South African Government. A member of ANC being involved in cash-in-transit heists, is only further proof of SA being a failed system but this “scandal” goes to show there is more criminality in the ANC than back room deals, the fact that ANC members are willing to put on a ski mask and rob a cash-in transit with an AK-47.
Errol Velile Present posted these words in on April 3rd Facebook post:
“When most of our freedom fighters lost their parents through this evil system either by death or disowned you took them in and became a mother father of this glorious nation under the banner if this Gigantic immeasurable liberation movement ANC.”
What prophetic words for a spiritual person that was arrest on charges of being involved in cash-in-transit heist.
But he seems to Present is not only a self fashion revolutionary but feels that he is a victim of chance and unseen forces. He posted this on April 17 on his Facebook page.
“Everything in life can be taken away from you and generally will be at some point.”
Present wrote on September 18th that “when you show yourself to the world and display your talents‚ you naturally stir all kinds of resentment‚ envy‚ and other manifestations of insecurity. You cannot spend your life worrying about the petty feelings of others.”
Present’s rise to headline status is not new, one year ago, Sunday Times reported 2017 that Present and his business partner were involved in a farm scandal in Limpopo when both men had been “gifted” a R97m Limpopo farm by former Minister of Rural Development Gugile Nkwinti, one of his role as minister was land reform.
Gugile Nkwinti introduced the Luthuli House comrade‚ who was “shopping” for a thriving Limpopo farm‚ to one of his top officials at a land summit.
Eight months after the meeting‚ Bekendvlei Farm was bought for R97m and handed over to Present‚ and his partner‚ businessman Moses Boshomane‚ to manage.
Neither Present nor Boshomane had an ancestral claim to the farm nor did they have agricultural experience.
Present received the farm in 2012, but by March 2016, the farm was run down and R18m worth of cattle had seemingly just disappeared.