EXCLUSIVE: Agrizzi involves Zuma, Jiba in the Bosasa scandal



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The foundation of former president Jacob Zuma was paid R300,000 a month by Bosasa for years, allegedly in return for his influence to ensure that political leaders would open the door to a new government contract.

When relations with Zuma grew, Bosasa CEO Gavin Watson turned to Zuma to kill ongoing corruption investigations by National Prosecutor Authority (NPA) and Hawk officials.

News24 has reliably learned that the former head of Bosasa operations Angelo Agrizzi will disclose this and more during his horrendous testimony before the Zondo Commission for investigating the country's arrest this week. Agrizzi will involve Minister Nomvula Mokonyane and the main prosecutor Nomgcobo Jiba and Lawrence Mrwebi who are ensnared in the Bosasa corruption network.

So comfortable with Watson with Zuma that before the meeting with the former president in May 2015, he described how he planned to lobby Zuma to appoint the National Director of Public Prosecution (NDPP) which would close the ongoing investigation.

Agrizzi secretly recorded the meeting and News24 obtained an audio clip in September last year.

VIEW: How Bosasa boasted about Zuma, the influence of NPA

But Bosasa and Watson did not only rely on Zuma's ability to block prosecution.

Around 2011 they devised a plan to bribe senior prosecutor Jiba and Mrwebi through former prison boss Linda Mti and his secretary, Jackie Lepinka, who at that time, was Jiba's personal assistant.

Agrizzi climbed to the booth on Wednesday and revealed bomb after bomb when he linked years of corruption at the Krugersdorp facility management company.

So far, his testimony has revealed a wide-ranging scheme operated by the company to generate cash to pay bribes every month, how officials of the South African Airport Company and the Post Office of the SA were bribed in tender payments as far back as 2001.

News24 revealed on Friday that this allegedly extended to Dr. Khotso de Wee, Zondo commission secretary and former head of operations in the justice department.

READ: Secretary of the commission Zondo is involved in Bosasa corruption

Following the report, De Wee offered to step aside and then be given special leave while awaiting the results of a commission investigation into the allegations against him.

But Agrizzi will come this week involving political leaders and Bosasa government officials allegedly bribed to secure contracts and to stay out of prison, including Jiba and Zuma.

Mokonyane is also suspected of receiving gifts including a fancy Christmas party sponsored by Bosasa, an upgrade and security system installed at her home, and she facilitates the sponsorship of Bosasa for a birthday party for Zuma and other ANC functions.

Not so correctional service

His testimony also has not dealt with bribes paid to the former boss of Linda Mti penitentiary, and the finance chief of the department Patrick Gillingham.

The improper relationship between Gillingham, Mti and Bosasa first made headlines in 2008 and 2009, when a Special Investigation Unit investigation revealed how bribes including cash, cars and houses were among others used to ensure Bosasa obtained a profitable contract from correctional services.

This accusation resulted in an investigation by the Hawks who were then newly established together with the NPA prosecutors.

To date, none of the parties involved has been prosecuted – allegedly as a result of bribes paid to officials responsible for the investigation.

News24 revealed on Saturday that the investigation had been completed, after almost exactly 10 years.

READ: Investigations relating to prison officials, Bosasa completed – NPA

In a recording, News24 had previously been published, it was revealed that Watson planned to push the president's hand to appoint the NDPP who would sympathize with Bosasa and to stop the investigation, and also protect Jiba and Mrwebi.

"We need to close this problem, Mr. President," Watson could be heard saying in a recording of what he planned to say to Zuma during a meeting scheduled for May 2015 in Nkandla.

Now former NDPP Shaun Abrahams was appointed a month later in June 2015.

READ: I was not appointed to protect anyone – Shaun Abrahams on the link to the Bosasa boss

LISTEN AND READ: Complete audio and complete transcripts: How Bosasa boasted about Zuma, the influence of NPA

Snake, Snail and Jay

During his testimony Agrizzi revealed that he kept a record of bribery codes in a small black notebook. The record was coded to prevent other staff members from setting the identity of the officials involved.

The code name for Jiba is & # 39; Snake & # 39 ;, while Mrwebi is & # 39; Snail & # 39; and Lepinka, & # 39; Jay & # 39 ;.

Allegedly Mti will meet Jiba, Mrwebi and Lepinka, or all three, and the Bosasa investigation will be discussed. Sometimes, cash will be handed over.

Cash is given to Mti either by Agrizzi or Watson with the understanding that R100 000 for Jiba, R20 000 for Lepinka and R10 000 for Mrwebi.

Mrwebi is the head of the NPA commercial crime unit and reports to Jiba, who is the head of the National Prosecution Service and then acts as NDPP.

Both of them are currently suspended and face questions about their fitness to hold office.

Agrizzi and Watson were told by Mti that the documents and information they knew came from Jiba and Mrwebi as well, but it was understood that Agrizzi had never personally witnessed Jiba or Mrwebi submit documents or meet with Mti.

A number of confidential NPA documents, including written statements by potential witnesses, were given to Bosasa by Mti, who in turn allegedly obtained documents from Jiba, Mrwebi and / or Lepinka.

Jiba, Mrwebi and Lepinka all expressly denied that they ever received cash payments from Bosasa when News24 handed them over to them in September 2018.

During the interview with Jiba at the NPA office, Jiba added that he did not know Mti and that in reality, it was thanks to him that the Bosasa problem had been pursued.

If it wasn't for him, "the Bosasa problem will still be dust," he told News24.

But this is contrary to the history of this case.

In 2009, SIU completed its report detailing how Bosasa bribed Mti and Gillingham with cash, cars, and prizes in return for multi-million bread catering and tender fencing in prisons throughout the country.

The report was referred to the NPA in February 2010 by then correctional service minister Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula, where since then, the report has become dust. In the midst of accusations & # 39; political interference & # 39; and incompetence, little progress has been made to date.

READ: New life for Bosasa prosecution after a delay of 8 years

A spokesman for Mokonyane told the Sunday Times that the minister knew Bosasa thanks to the company's social investment on the West Rand, but denied the allegations were "without truth".

"The minister was not aware of any testimony before the commission on which the allegations were based, and he was also not advised by the commission that the allegations were brought against him. When and when the charges were submitted to the commission, he committed to respond," the newspaper quoted Mokonyane spokesman , Mlimandlela Ndamasa, as said.

Request for comment was sent to Zuma's spokesperson. This article will be updated when responses are received.

READ MORE MORE: Myeni – Bosasa, Zuma and Dudu Myeni connections

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