Controversial business-woman turned Kwa MamMkhize reality star Shawn Mkhize (nee Mpisane) has been trending on social media after it was assumed that the company that recently scored a R1-billion tender to lease office space to the Government Pensions Administration Agency belongs to her.
Political commentator, occasional radio host, and businessman Khaya Sithole made the announcement via Twitter on Tuesday that the tender – valued at R988,754,774.49 – had been awarded to a company called Mpisane Properties.
Because many are still so used to referring to Mkhize by the surname she used while she was married to Durban businessman Sbu Mpisane, it was incorrectly assumed that the tender was awarded to their family.
Shawn, who is the daughter of the late ANC veteran and anti-apartheid activist Florence Mkhize, gained notoriety in the early 2000s when one of the companies under her Zikhulise Group umbrella corporation helped her family amass a massive fortune through building thousands of low-cost houses in and around the eThekwini Municipality area in Durban.
Prior to this, her family reportedly used to throw exclusive parties at their famed mansion in the plush Durban north suburb of La Lucia.
Over the years she has been locked in a protracted battle with the South African Revenue Service (Sars) that resulted in her having to pay them at least R16 million for outstanding personal income taxes.
It began in 2014 when Sars claimed that Shawn owed them up to R65 million in personal income tax. Her legal team managed to get the amount revised down last year, thus her R16 million payment.
Despite all the aforementioned folklore about Shawn’s family, it was the National Prosecuting Authority Asset Forfeiture Unit’s seizure of her family’s luxury fleet of vehicles that cemented their name into the public consciousness about three years ago. And it is this same scandal that many on social media used as the reason for their belief that she owned the company that won the tender in question.
Although there is nothing about Mpisane Properties (Pty) Ltd on the internet, a thorough search on the Companies and Intellectual Property Commission eServices website shows that the company is not linked to Mkhize’s family in any way.
The company was established in 2017 and has one Mpisane Leonard Nyalunga listed as its director.
According to an entry on Simeka Capital Holdings‘ website, Nyalunga started his career as a property administrator at Tupelo Properties in 2014.
The 30-year-old went on to establish Mpisane Properties in 2017 where he focused on tenant installation and IT installations with the ambition of expanding to property investment and development.
Fast-forward to three years later and Nyalunga has a R1-billion tender under his belt.