Former Bosasa employee Frans Voster told the State Capture Commission of Inquiry that Environmental Affairs Minister Nomvula Mokonyane was the link between the facility and management company and the African National Congress.
He told the commission’s Chairperson Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo that through Mokonyane, who received favours such as bribes from Bosasa, the company funded many ANC elections functions.
Voster spoke of one such function for ANC staff and volunteers which took place before the last national elections.
“The person from the ANC that drove the process was Minister Mokonyane. It cost a lot of money. I had to carry the cost of the people in the call centre, their tea, their coffee, their lunch, toilet paper, cleaning of bathrooms. All of that, I had to carry on … cost.”
Voster has told the Commission about how the facility and management company hired vehicles for the daughter of Environmental Affairs Minister Nomvula Mokonyane. He says he was awarded a R20 000 cash “bonus” every month to prevent him from talking about the dodgy dealings that went on between Bosasa and government.
Voster has explained why Mokonyane and her family enjoyed favours from Bosasa.
“I often questioned Gavin, Angelo and the other directors why I had to drop everything to attend to the Minister and the family and it became apparent over the years that she was the key person and link and had huge political contacts; everyone to the previous presidents of South Africa and I had to do what I was instructed to do, even in Mr Mbeki’s time and Mr Zuma’s time.”
Initially, former Bosasa Chief Financial Officer Andries van Tonder told the Commission that his former boss, Gavin Watson, tried several times to convince former Chief Operations Officer Angelo Agrizzi not to blow the whistle on what was happening at the company.
The Commission heard how Watson was willing to reach any agreement with Agrizzi in a bid to silence him. Van Tonder also narrated in detail how they sourced cash from multiple sources.
He has told the State Capture Commission that bribery between Bosasa and many government officials was at alarming levels.
Van Tonder says developments at Bosasa continued to attract media attention, which saw the SIU conducting some investigations at the company.
He detailed how all those who facilitated the bribes would be awarded monthly bonuses.
“I recall mainly from Gavin Watson himself, if he was around, but if he was not around or present at the office at the time, I recall his daughter Lindzy Watson would give me the cash”
Van Tonder also confirmed that misrepresentations were made to the South African Revenue Services (Sars) about the dodgy dealings between Bosasa and government. He says he presented evidence to Sars on one project which was a “prawn” production company in Krugersdorp, west of Johannesburg.
Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo has assured those who were implicated in the testimony of former Bosasa COO Angelo Agrizzi, that they will be given excerpts from his affidavit in order to respond and if need be, cross-examine Agrizzi.
”All their rights would be observed, and in due course, they would be given relevant portions of the statement of affidavit so that they could deal with the allegations against them. There is no intention on the part of the Commission not to allow people who are implicated an opportunity to respond to the relevant portions of Mr Agrizzi’s statement. There is also no intention to preclude anybody from initiating any processes in terms of the rules of the Commission.”
The Commission of Inquiry into State Capture adjourned for the day and is expected to continue at 10 o’clock on Thursday morning.