Sunday World stands by Bonang 'tax fraud' story amidst R10-million lawsuit
Hot-on-the-heels of an apparent R10-million lawsuit brought against it by Bonang Matheba, Sunday World have responded to claims that a 'tax fraud' report allegedly involving the TV star is "fake".
In a report published on August 26, the paper claimed that Bonang had allegedly landed in hot water with the law and was being investigated for failing to submit her full tax returns. The report stated that the matter was allegedly adjourned, pending the outcome of further investigations.
Bonang has since slammed the report on social media and her management, Celebrity Services Africa (CSA) told TshisaLIVE the story allegedly "contains factual errors" and that Bonang "was never summonsed to appear and never appeared on charges of tax fraud".
Bonang's lawyers confirmed to TshisaLIVE that they served the paper with a letter of demand and that they were suing for R10-million.
"We have been instructed by our client Miss Bonang Matheba to sue Sunday World Newspaper for an amount of R10-million on the basis of defamation.
"Various injurious statements were made in an article published by Sunday World on the 26th of August 2018 which have caused our client to suffer significant damages hence our having been instructed to proceed against the newspaper in question," Charl Coetzee of CDC Law Inc said in a statement.
Sunday World have rejected claims that the story is "fake" and that they stand by it.
"Sunday World rejects assertions that have been circulated that our story is fake. We stand by the report and the comment by the National Prosecuting Authority spokesperson, Phindi Louw-Mjonondwane, who firmly confirmed the matter to us," Sunday World editor Mapula Nkosi said.
Mapula said that any response to Bonang's lawsuit would be addressed through the relevant channels.
Read the publication's full statement below.
Sunday World rejects assertions that have been circulated that our story is fake.
We stand by the report and the comment by the National Prosecuting Authority spokesperson, Phindi Louw-Mjonondwane, who firmly confirmed the matter to us.
A fraud docket with a case number Sunday World has seen has been registered at the Johannesburg Central Station against Bonang Dorothy Matheba.
Sunday World relied on our triple sourcing method to test these allegations and two court officials quoted in our article confirmed the case to us.
Another source, a police officer from the intelligence unit, collaborated that a case of fraud is being investigated by the Commercial Crime Investigations Unit and was indeed registered at the Johannesburg Central Station.
Sunday World has evidence of these details as confirmation.
Further to our facts being questioned Mjonondwane clarified the statement from the NPA.
"In our file we have a case that was registered against Bonang Matheba at the Johannesburg Central Station. The docket was brought to us and we have not yet decided on it at this stage, pending further investigations," she said.
Mjonondwane indicates clearly in our article that the matter exists.
Whilst we respect Matheba's right to seek any recourse available to her, any matter of her intended lawsuit will be ventilated in the appropriate forum. She is also free to challenge any other issue she has regarding our reportage through correct channels.