Singer Zahara. (Photo: Silver Sibiya)
- Zahara failed to appear in court.
- The singer faces charges related to the non-submission of personal and company income tax returns.
- She was fined R1 500 or three months imprisonment.
Singer Bulelwa Mkutukana, popularly known as Zahara, failed to appear in court for charges related to the non-submission of personal and company income tax returns.
On Monday, Mkutukana was found guilty of failing to appear on 19 April. The Palm Ridge Specialised Commercial Crimes Court issued a warrant of arrest for her on the same day.
She then appeared in court on Monday.
According to the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA), the court heard evidence as to why the singer had failed to appear in April, after which the magistrate proceeded with the case.
She is charged in her personal capacity, and also as a representative of her company, Zahara Trading (Pty) Ltd.
NPA spokesperson Phindi Mjonondwane said:
In this case, she faces charges related to the non-submission of personal and company income tax returns to the South African Revenue Service.
She added that the State prosecutor, Nerissa Reddy, from the Johannesburg Specialised Tax Unit, argued that the singer’s reasons for not appearing in court were highly unreasonable.
Reddy said Mkutukana only appeared in court when the commercial crimes investigators, Warrant Officer Pillay and Constable Tumber, traced her whereabouts.
She added that Mkutukana’s celebrity status did not exempt her from facing justice.
Justice should be meted out equally, as everyone is equal in the eyes of the law and should be treated as such,” she said. “He found her guilty and fined her R1 500 or three months imprisonment. He further warned her to appear in court at the next appearance date on 25 June 2021.
Speaking to News24, Mkutukana said: “I’ve never appeared in any court. I don’t know any court appearance,” she said.
The matter was postponed for disclosure of the contents of the docket to her legal representative.
The songstress’ bail conditions were that she must hand in her passport to the commercial crimes officers within 24 hours and to report to the Roodepoort police station on Tuesdays and Thursdays, between 08h00 and 18h00.