Michelle Skelton, a project manager for the H3 Africa consortium,based at the University of Cape Town Heath Sciences Faculty,is a cousin to Tania Majiet,one of the accused in the Gumtree Murder case which took place in Cape Town in 2012.
Tania Majiet , was added as the fifth accused in the murder of 21 year old Olwyn Cowley who was murdered after trying to sell his car via the Gumtree classifieds website.Majiet was arrested after it was discovered that her co-accused had washed the murder victim’s vehicle at her home.
The charges against Tania Majiet were withdrawn in 2014. Soegbudien Abvajee one of the co-accused in the matter is Majiet’s ex-boyfriend and they have a child together.
Abvajee (Tania Majiet’s ex) was sentenced to 15 years for robbery, three years for the illegal possession of a firearm, and one year for the illegal possession of ammunition, which would all run concurrently with his sentence of life imprisonment for Cowley’s murder.
Majiet’s mother and Dr Michelle Skelton’s mother are sisters and they are therefore first cousins.
Some of the articles detailing Tania Majiet’s court appearances in connection with the Gumtree murder case and other articles related to this matter:
An ex-partner of UCT academic and researcher, Michelle Skelton, was embroiled in one of the worst pension fund scandals in South African history.
Erwin Da Gama,a former romantic partner of Dr Michelle Skelton , or more specifically his company was a conduit for some of the more than R100 millon that was embezzled from the SACTWU Provident Fund.
Richard Kawie,and Sam Buthelezi have been criminally charged in this matter and the matter is currently before the Bellville Magistrate’s Court.
Deputy Economic Development Minister Enoch Godongwana resigned his ministry post as his company,Canyon Springs,was involved.
Da Gama,who has a minor child with Dr Michelle Skelton has been barred from practising as an attorney in South Africa in an unrelated previous matter.
Dr Michelle Skelton is currently the project manager for the H3 Africa Project at UCT.
The misappropriation of funds from the SACTWU provident affected the pension and retirement savings of thousands of lowly paid textile workers.
The debacle was widely covered by the South African press and media: