#StateCapture: ‘Even the Pope would have been corrupted’

23 Jan, 2019 - 19:01 0 Views
#StateCapture: ‘Even the Pope would have been corrupted’ Commission chair deputy chief justice Raymond Zondo. - Netwerk24

The Herald

JOHANNESBURG. – So intense was the heat at the coalface of the Bosasa bribery empire “even the Pope would have been corrupted”.

This according to Angelo Agrizzi, the former Bosasa chief operations officer turned whistleblower, whose marathon testimony before the state capture commission of inquiry wrapped up its fifth day on Tuesday.

Agrizzi took to the stand last Wednesday under a cloud of secrecy, spun for his protection, to deliver damning revelations from the heart of Bosasa – which has been revealed as a tender machine that bribed its way into lucrative government contracts.

Tuesday’s affairs were far removed from the electrically charged atmosphere of the previous four days, and in the dying minutes of the day, tempers flared between evidence leader Advocate Paul Pretorius and Agrizzi, causing commission chairman deputy chief justice Raymond Zondo to intervene and eventually call a halt to proceedings for the day.

Former Bosasa chief operations officer Angelo Agrizzi has revealed details of how much the company spent in bribes on a monthly basis, during his testimony at the judicial commission of inquiry into state capture.

Agrizzi did however deliver damning confirmation of media revelations and findings of a Special Investigating Unit report over the relationship Bosasa held with correctional services officials, which could likely be a key part of testimony needed by prosecutors to take a decade-old case to court.

Agrizzi grew flustered and frustrated when he could not find a certain paragraph Pretorius was referring to in a 2009 Special Investigating Unit report. He accused Pretorius of confusing him, and Pretorius responded by saying he was in fact, reading in sequence.

Zondo stepped in and it was decided the testimony would continue on Wednesday.

For most of Tuesday, Agrizzi dealt with the improper relationship between Bosasa and former prisons officials Linda Mti and Patrick Gillingham in detail.

He also revealed how he had participated in the destruction of evidence following media reports and a tip-off that the SIU was planning a raid on Bosasa’s offices.

This included taking documents and computers from the Bosasa travel agent’s offices to a construction site where they were set alight and then buried using a front-end loader.

His testimony confirmed media reports from 2009 over certain events surrounding correctional services tenders, which formed the basis of the SIU investigation. – News24

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