Embattled former ANC Youth League leader Julius Malema has failed to prevent a court order for the preservation of his assets.
North Gauteng High Court Judge Jody Kollapen today made the preservation order final after Malema failed to show why his assets should not be auctioned off to settle his R16-million tax bill.
The court had issued a provisional order on March 5 for the sale of Malema’s assets and he was given until today to prevent it from being made final.
According to the court order, Kollapen heard the application by the South African Revenue Services in chambers after Malema was informed to appear today to tell the court why the order should not be made final.
The application was brought by SARS after the sheriff of the court attempted to remove assets from Malema’s Florapark home in Limpopo, only to find that some of his assets were no longer on the premises.
Sars accused Malema of hiding his valuable assets after a February auction only managed to sell assets worth R54 810.
City Press could not immediately determine whether Malema or his lawyer Tumi Mokwena were in court when the final order was made.
Cloete Murray, one of two curators appointed to deal with Malema’s assets confirmed the order was made final.
“We confirm that the provisional preservation order granted in the above matter on 5 March 2013 by the North Gauteng High Court was made final today. The curators will now proceed to enforce the provisions of the order,” said Murray, adding that they would not make any further comments at this stage.
Malema’s assets were attached in January in efforts by the taxman to recover the millions in unpaid income tax.
It was reported that Malema’s offer of R4 million to settle the bill was also rejected by the taxman.
According to the order, the curators are authorised “by any means of auctions or out of hand sales, to dispose of any or all the Malema’s assets and to pay such proceeds to the applicant’s attorneys, Mahlangu Inc, to be held in an interest bearing account, pending the outcome of the application for sequestration of the Malema’s estate”.
The court has also ordered that if Malema’s estate is sequestrated the net proceeds of the sequestration be paid to the appointed trustee.
“In the event of the respondent’s estate not being sequestrated the net proceeds should be applied towards the outstanding tax liability of the respondent,” reads the preservation order.
Curators will also have to interview Malema within three days to get the “full particulars” of all Malema’s assets and how the assets were acquired.
If Malema fails to make a full declaration of his assets the curators are authorised to call him before the mediator, Judge Meyer Joffe, to testify and explain the whereabouts of his assets.
“All the above powers must be exercised by the curators strictly in the interest of the respondent (Malema) and with the objective of ensuring that the maximum value of the assets be maintained and recovered,” reads the order.
Malema has been ordered to pay the costs of the application of the preservation order.
His lawyer, Mokwena, could not be reached for comment at the time of going to press.
Sars spokesperson Adrian Lackay declined to comment, referring City Press to the order of the court. city press