The alleged capture of the state and corruption within the ruling ANC is no longer news to most South Africans. Many ANC politicians have been accused of being captured by the Guptas.

Amathole ANC regional secretary Teris Ntutu could be sent to prison for life should he be convicted on charges of fraud, corruption and money laundering.

The Butterworth Magistrate’s Court heard yesterday that the director of public prosecutions (DPP) in Mthatha has decided that Ntutu and three others be tried in the Mthatha High Court in accordance with Section 26 of the Prevention and Combating of Corrupt Activities Act of 2004.

Section 26 of the act prescribes that if convicted in the high court, the guilty party can be sentenced up to life imprisonment.

If convicted in a regional court, the longest sentence is 18 years and if convicted in a district court, five years.

Ntutu appeared in court yesterday alongside his three co-accused Butterworth businessman Sive Nombembe, Mnquma local municipality employee Zanele Mbewu and Kwazulu-Natal based businessman Regis Masuku.

The four face charges in relation to a R10-million black plastic bag tender the scandal-prone Mnquma local authority issued to Nombembe’s Big Event Boy company two years ago.

Accused number one on the matter was the late Mnquma municipal manager Sindile Tantsi, who died in a car crash earlier this year while out on bail of R40 000.

It is the state’s case that soon after the tender was awarded to Nombembe, he made kickback cash deposits of R235 000 into Ntutu’s account, R185 000 into Nombewu’s account and R650 000 into Masuku’s account.

Ntutu has denied the money was a kickback and described it as a donation for his boxing business.