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Posts for March 2019

1 March 2019

Eskom head of treasury Andre Pillay testified that a R25-billion loan facility signed in 2017 by then interim CEO Sean Maritz was a grossly flawed process that exposed interference from then board chairperson Zethembe Khoza and former public enterprises minister Lynn Brown.

Eskom pressed to sign up for dodgy R25bn loan agreement

4 March 2019

For the R25-billion loan deal between Eskom and Chinese firm Huarong to proceed, all repayments from the power utility would have to be paid into the account of an entity called Ideva. This put officials in Eskom’s treasury unit in an awkward situation, and prompted senior manager for funding execution Sincedile Shweni to demand that Ideva submit financial statements, through which he could assess its legitimacy.

Executives bypassed regulations to push through Eskom-Huarong deal

5 March 2019

The controversial advance payment of R659-million that Eskom made to Tegeta Exploration in April 2016 came under the spotlight at the commission of inquiry into state capture on Tuesday. The commission heard how procurement controls were breached in order to process the payment on an unusually tight deadline.

Multi-million-rand Tegeta payment rushed through irregularly

11 March 2019

Another manager in Eskom’s primary energy division has testified to the irregular processes that senior executives at the power utility used to impose penalties on Optimum mine while that it was owned by Glencore Minerals and during the lead up to its acquisition by Tegeta Exploration.

Eskom execs helped Tegeta bully Glencore into selling Optimum

11 March 2019

The commission of inquiry into state capture heard on Monday how Eskom lied to National Treasury about Majuba power station receiving coal from Brakfontein Extension, a part of the Brakfontein mine with which the power utility concluded a coal supply agreement in March 2015.

Power station forced to accept sub-standard coal from Gupta company

12 March 2019

A dismissive Brian Molefe, new in the position of CEO in 2015, wanted to hear nothing of a proposed price hike by Eskom to Optimum, on the basis that the mine had for some time been supplying coal at a higher cost than what they were getting from Eskom for it.

Eskom execs refused to listen to reason in Optimum case

12 March 2019

Standard Bank’s Ian Sinton has revealed how his team had to investigate a trail of transactions over the course of 2014 that the bank deemed suspicious, stemming from Transnet as the original source. Over R200-milliion was moved around in this way, before Standard Bank took action.

Standard Bank probed suspicious transactions between Transnet and contractors

13 March 2019

Tom Moyane’s lawyer, Advocate Dali Mpofu, submitted Moyane’s argument to be permitted to cross-examination, over allegations Pravin Gordhan made against him during his testimony before the commission in November last year.

Arguments for and against Moyane’s application to cross-examine Gordhan

14 March 2019

The commission of inquiry into state capture heard on Wednesday that former Gupta company Oakbay Investments may have lied about being good for the money to buy Glencore-owned Optimum mine in early 2016.

Dodgy machinations behind Eskom’s insistence of Optimum sale to Oakbay

14 March 2019

Former mineral resources director-general, Thibedi Ramontja, told the commission of inquiry into state capture on Thursday that all issues relating to Optimum mine became centralised in the office of former minister Mosebenzi Zwane when he arrived at the department in late 2015.

Zwane took over Optimum Mine-related issues on appointment as minister

15 March 2019

Former deputy finance minister Mcebisi Jonas has refuted claims by Duduzane Zuma that the only reason the latter drove him to the Gupta family home in Saxonwold on 23 October 2015 was to help settle a spat between Jonas and Duduzane’s long-time friend Fana Hlongwane.

Jonas sticks to his story under cross-examination

18 March 2019

Former public enterprises minister Lynne Brown brought changes to the Denel board in mid-2015 that contributed to its financial freefall and did not speak to the needs of the arms company at that time.

Denel board appointed without following proper processes

20 March 2019

The board of directors appointed at state-owned arms company Denel in 2015 did not only embark on a deal with VR Laser without sufficiently researching market appetite for this new entity, but a consequence of the deal is that Denel lost a lot of money in the process, while VR Laser was the main beneficiary.

Lynne Brown a major player in Denel’s ill-advised moves

20 March 2019

The takeover of VR Laser, the company allegedly used by the Gupta family to advance a venture with Denel and establish the controversial Denel Asia, was detailed by its former shareholder and COO Madoda Benny Jiyane at the commission of inquiry into state capture on Tuesday, 19 March.

VR Laser’s Jiyane swiftly and sneakily forced out by Gupta cronies

21 March 2019

The only reason former Denel head Riaz Saloojee lost his job in 2016 was because he was a stumbling block to all Gupta attempts to do irregular business with the state-owned arms manufacturer.

Denel Asia nothing but a money-making scheme for Guptas

22 March 2019

Fikile Mbalula confirmed on Friday that he told an ANC national executive committee meeting in 2011 of his anger and irritation at finding out from by Ajay Gupta of his impending promotion from deputy minister of police to minister of sports and recreation the previous year.

Mbalula was concerned about the Guptas’ growing influence and power

26 March 2019

Former Bosasa auditor Peet Venter told the Zondo commission that he was threatened by former Bosasa COO turned whistle-blower Angelo Agrizzi to get him to participate in Agrizzi’s plan to expose Bosasa CEO Gavin Watson.

Agrizzi, Van Tonder plotted to expose Gavin Watson and take Bosasa down

27 March 2019

On his second day of testimony at the Zondo commission of inquiry into state capture, former Bosasa auditor Peet Venter told the commission that the firm’s CEO Gavin Watson asked him numerous times to do illegal things.

Bosasa CEO Watson made others do his dirty work