Mineral Resources Minister Gwede Mantashe faced some tough questions at the State Capture Commission, particularly on gratifications, which were allegedly courtesy of Bosasa.
Mantashe appeared before the commission on Friday evening, 19 March 2021.
The minister gave testimony related to the scandal-plagued company, which is said to have offered him free security installations to his properties, to the tune of approximately R300 000.
Bosasa’s former COO Angelo Agrizzi had told the commission that the company provided security installations and upgrades to the homes of several high-profile politicians, including Mantashe’s properties in Gauteng and the Eastern Cape. Bosasa is alleged to have also provided bribes and other forms of gratification, all in exchange for lucrative state contracts.
Gwede Mantashe tells Commission about Bosasa security upgrades
According to Gwede Mantashe, the ANC’s former security head, Mzonke Nyakaza, had been told by Bosasa’s Papa Leshabane that they would be able to provide additional security to his home in Boksburg in 2013. Mantashe said the upgrades were necessary because there had been break-ins at the property.
Mantashe said he had no idea that Nyakaza had sought Leshabane’s assistance to acquire the services.
“I was kept out of the details of security, and the security advisor (took care of that). Papa Leshabane would have made arrangements with the security team for the Eastern Cape. Mzonke Nyakaza was dealing with the security details, without involving me,”
Mantashe said the subsequent security upgrades to his Eastern Cape properties, were encouraged by the success of the installations in his Boksburg home.
“The installations were effected in the Eastern cape in 2016, having seen the effectiveness of the cameras in Boksburg where we even found a person who was stealing from within, who is working in the property. We thought that we should put those cameras in those properties as well,” he said.
Mantashe also admitted to knowing Gavin Watson, the company’s former director, who was considered the main orchestrator of bribes allegedly paid to the likes of former minister Nomvula Mokonyane and former ANC MP Vincent Smith.
“I know Gavin. We crossed wires earlier in my life as a trade unionist when he wanted contracts in mines and we had to fight when he was bribing shop stewards and I said ‘No, No, we are not to agree to this’”.