Luthuli given list of 11 charges
26 May 2012
THE cloud over Nobel laureate Chief Albert Luthuli’s grandson has become darker.
Nkululeko Luthuli, whom the Royal Household Trust suspended from his post as CEO in February, now faces internal charges of misconduct.
This follows a full inquiry into its administration and finances, according to Judge Jerome Ngwenya, chairperson of the trust.
It is alleged that Luthuli used trust funds for personal use and he is also accused of irregular expenditure totalling R3 million through contraventions of the the Public Finance Management Act and treasury regulations.
The trust manages the affairs of the Zulu Royal Household and ensures its financial independence.
“Investigations are still continuing, [but] the board has decided to charge him with misconduct,” Ngwenya said.
Luthuli was sent a letter stating detailing charges against him and was given five days to reply.
“While we cannot pronounce on the guilt or otherwise of our CEO, it is important that a fair and due process be put in place urgently,” Ngwenya said.
The internal charges of gross misconduct include allegations that Luthuli increased his own salary without the board’s approval.
He is also alleged to have hired three cars for his friends and himself at the trust’s expense. When they were damaged he allegedly paid insurance excess of more than R87 000 with trust money.
It is also alleged that he travelled to London at a cost of R100 000 and failed to account for how he spent it.
Luthuli allegedly bought a laptop for R16 579,85 having already been provided with one and apparently failed to return it to the trust.
The balance of the charges relate to the renovation of his Durban flat and installing an entertainment unit totalling R20 000, allegedly at the trust’s expense.
He is also accused of using R63 044 in trust funds to buy furniture for his Luthuli Foundation.
Luthuli — who earns just over R1 million a year — was suspended on full pay in February.
Durban-based law firm Jafta Incorporated was appointed to head the inquiry.
Philani Jafta told The Weekend Witness that the firm had forwarded a notice of the charges to Luthuli to respond to.
Luthuli declined to say whether he had received the charges and told Weekend Witness to forward all questions to the trust.