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By Makhosandile Zulu


R86k spent on Richard Mdluli and wife’s flight tickets to China, Zondo hears

The witness says R50k was loaned from a car dealership and R50k was taken as an advance from the secret service slush fund.

Ex-crime intelligence member Colonel Dhanajaya Naidoo on Monday told the commission of inquiry into state capture that an estimated R86,000 was spent in purchasing flight tickets for former intelligence boss Richard Mdluli and his wife, Vusiwani Lillian Mdluli.

Naidoo said this was around October or November 2009, soon after Mdluli was appointed as crime intelligence divisional commissioner.

Prior to Mdluli’s trip to China, Major General Solomon Lazarus, who was the chief financial officer (CFO) of the secret services account (SSA), told him that Mdluli wanted to take his wife to China and that he should be assisted with this.

Naidoo told the chairperson of the commission, Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo, that Lazarus’ exact words had been: “The larney wants to take his vrou to China and we must see how we can help him.”

He said Lazarus then instructed him to make inquiries about the flight tickets, which he did at Flight Centre in Pretoria where he made provisional bookings for Mdluli and his wife.

On November 3, 2009, Lazarus called Naidoo to his office and gave him an envelope, which the former later told the witness contained R50,000.

“He said they managed to get a loan from Mr Jan Venter,” Naidoo said, who ran a car dealership, Atlantis Motors, which crime intelligence purchased vehicles from.

Naidoo said Lazarus then instructed him to take a R50,000 advance from the SSA and use that as well as the money in the envelope to purchase the flight tickets.

“I secured the funds, chair, and in total, I had R100,000,” Naidoo said, adding that the tickets had cost R86,000.

The commission has adjourned for lunch.

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