Martin Williams
3 minute read
28 Aug 2019
9:35 am

Not so elementary, Watson

Martin Williams

The ANC have claimed Gavin Watson as theirs - as they did with Brett Kebble. Which raises the question, would any ANC faction have wanted Watson dead?

Bosasa CEO Gavin Watson, left, with then president Jacob Zuma on 11 April 2015 visiting the company's Krugersdorp headquarters. Picture: Twitter

With the glut of explanations for Gavin Watson’s violent death, you’d think Sherlock Holmes had been reincarnated in multiple guises.

On Twitter we find experts on everything, including forensic pathology. Within minutes they worked out how and why Watson died. Clever tweeps.

How do we know he was murdered? Holmes, the fictional detective created by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, might have said: “Elementary my dear Watson” (except that Conan Doyle did not write those words, which were later used in a Sherlock Holmes movie).

We are prone to conspiracy theories. I plead guilty. Upon seeing a report that Watson had been killed in a “horrific” accident, I thought the quotation marks had been misplaced. They should have been on the word “accident”.

The ANC’s eulogy to Watson is reminiscent of how convicted fraudster Tony Yengeni was carried shoulder-high by party leaders and ululating supporters to Pollsmoor prison in 2006. Parallels have been drawn with Brett Kebble, who was shot dead in his car in September 2005. Both Kebble and Watson were accused of massive corruption and both gave large amounts of money to the ANC.

The ANC love their crooks. Anyone who knows how to milk the system is deemed fit for office. Watson was perfect. Having used struggle credentials to secure government contracts, he dished out millions in cash and kind, even if we believe only a fraction of former Bosasa executive Angelo Agrizzi’s testimony at the Commission of Inquiry into State Capture.

With Watson being publicly labelled by Agrizzi as a crook, there is fertile ground for speculation. And the recent death, in his sleep, of Barry Eugene Farber, founder of Edelstein Farber Grobler (EFG), becomes interesting.

EFG handled Watson’s R500,000 donation to Cyril Ramphosa’s ANC leadership election campaign. So the person who made the donation and the founder of the firm which received it, both die within a week. Hmmm. Remember, any interpretation is conjecture.

Nothing is proved by this apparent coincidence. Nor by the news that Watson was scheduled to appear at a Sars inquiry yesterday, where he could have been slapped with a multimillion-rand claim. And a subpoena to appear before Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo. Hmmm.

One journalist could find no evidence that Watson had applied brakes “or attempted to avoid the collision with a concrete bridge pillar”. (Cars don’t collide with pillars. A collision is the coming together of two or more moving objects).

Tweeps continued to list factors deemed suspicious: “No blood on the car or at the scene. No tyre skit (skid?). No statement from EMS. No forensics on site. No danger tape around crime scene.” Yet, we don’t know if any of these assertions are true.

No doubt there will be as much ANC fanfare at Watson’s funeral as there was at Kebble’s. Will we know more by then?

The ANC have, without reservation, claimed him as theirs. Just as they did with Kebble. Indeed he was wrapped up in the ANC.

Which raises the question, would any ANC faction have wanted Watson dead? And why?

Martin Williams, DA councillor and former editor of The Citizen.

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