The Western Cape High Court has dismissed former state security minister Bongani Bongo’s bribery and corruption case.
Speaking to the SABC following the judgment on Friday, Bongo said: “I’ve been in the media space for the past three years and I never ate anyone’s money. When we’re ready and done, we’re going to explain how these conspiracies work and unfold. I’ve consulted with the legal team because I want to sue Vanara and others. This has been a malicious prosecution.”
Bongo had been in and out of court following allegations he tried to bribe senior parliamentary official Ntuthuzelo Vanara in an attempt to disrupt an inquiry into Eskom.
Advocate Vanara was the inquiry leader at the time.
Bongo’s case was linked to former president Jacob Zuma’s announcement in 2017 of an inquiry into the power utility following several allegations of corruption.
Bongo was accused of trying to disrupt a parliamentary inquiry into state capture at Eskom on 10 October 2017.
Vanara accused Bongo of asking him to fake an illness and take sick leave because the inquiry could not proceed in his absence.
Bongo also allegedly offered Vanara, who was also the former acting registrar of members’ interests in Parliament, a cash bribe.
All Vanara had to do was “name the price” and explain to Bongo how he would help to stop the inquiry, Vanara alleged.
Bongo would, in turn, go back to the “Eskom people” and explain Vanara’s plan to stop the inquiry and the price they would have to pay for his (Vanara’s) assistance.
Money would then be given to Bongo who would hand it over to Vanara.
Bongo’s acquittal has been welcomed by his supporters, including former Nelson Mandela Bay ANC councilor Andile Lungisa who said: “When we fight for innocent until proven guilty principle we know our story.”
Compiled by Vhahangwele Nemakonde. Background reporting by News24 Wire