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By Brian Sokutu

Senior Print Journalist

How deep were ANC leaders in Bosasa’s pocket?

The ANC has traditionally used war rooms for its leaders to hold strategy sessions in the run up to elections, with the head of organising and campaigns chairing proceedings.

From the provision of war room facilities to the showering of its leaders with gifts and money was how deep the ANC and its leaders were in the pocket of facilities management company Bosasa during the Jacob Zuma presidency, the state capture report has revealed.

The ANC has traditionally used war rooms for its leaders to hold strategy sessions in the run up to elections, with the head of organising and campaigns chairing proceedings.

The third report released by Acting Chief Justice Raymond Zondo, reflecting on evidence given by former Bosasa boss Angelo Agrizzi, found that the provision to the ANC of war room facilities at the cost of millions to the company and no cost to the party, amounted to “gain of whatsoever nature”.

Agrizzi, said the report, “may have exaggerated the expenditure, but it is clear from the sophistication of the equipment, facilities and the time period over which they were provided – three months in respect of the 2014 elections and two months in respect of the Mangaung conference – that the value was substantial”.

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The report said why ANC national executive committee member Nomvula Mokonyane did not – during her testimony to the Commission of Inquiry into State Capture – dispute such assistance to the party from Bosasa at no charge.

“President [Cyril] Ramaphosa testified that, while he visited the facility, it never occurred to him that Bosasa was bankrolling the war room facilities.

“Bosasa was a business organisation that was invested in securing tenders from government departments and organs of state.

“Against the backdrop of all the evidence received by the commission in connection with Bosasa and the extent of which its business model was based on its ability to influence public office bearers, one need merely consider the potentially catastrophic consequences for Bosasa, if the ANC were to be voted out of power – to understand how important the provision of war room facilities to the ANC was, in order for Bosasa to be able to achieve its business objectives,” said the report.

In assessing evidence given by Agrizzi on Mokonyane:

  • During 2008 and 2009 – when she was Gauteng premier, Mokonyane approached Bosasa and requested an analysis of security at provincial hospitals, with Agrizzi preparing the report at the R2 million expense to Bosasa.

The idea was that, if Bosasa produced “a good report” there would be a tender put out for the provision of security services at such hospitals, with the company services being sought.

  • Extensive benefits and money was given to Mokonyane by the late Bosasa chief executive Gavin Watson, due to her political clout and influence. Zondo found the relationship between Bosasa and Mokonyane amounted to the breach of her oath under the constitution, the Executive Members Ethics Act and the Executive Ethics Code.

The report also criticised Deputy Defence and Military Veterans Minister Thabang Makwetla’s acceptance of security upgrades by Bosasa at his home – finding him in breach of his constitutional, legislative and ethical duties.

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The report also revealed that ANC MP Cedric Frolick, often received regular payments of R40 000 from Valance Watson, brother to Gavin Watson, for government business facilitation.

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