‘I saw Phosa write Mabuza spy report’

2015-03-09 08:00

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Former employee claims he watched the ANC veteran write the report accusing David Mabuza of being an apartheid-era spy

One of ANC veteran Mathews Phosa’s former employees claims he watched Phosa draft a report at his Hazyview home accusing Mpumalanga Premier David Mabuza of being an apartheid-era spy.

This allegation, as yet untested, completely contradicts Phosa’s insistence that a whistle-blower anonymously delivered a document to his house about Mabuza’s alleged past.

Phosa says he then passed this on to ANC deputy secretary-general Jessie Duarte.

Phosa strongly denies the affidavit’s claim and accuses his former employee, Jan Venter, of lying under oath.

Jan Venter claims he watched Mathews Phosa write a document accusing David Mabuza of being a spy.

The report, which emerged late last year, alleges that Mabuza, along with former Vlakplaas commander Eugene de Kock and security policeman Butana Nofomela, spied on top ANC officials Phosa, President Jacob Zuma, Albertina Sisulu and Angie Motshekga.

Mabuza is suing Phosa and denies allegations that he ever spied for the apartheid government.

Venter has presented his version of events in a sworn affidavit signed by acting deputy police commissioner of North West, Major General

Jacob Tsumane.

Tsumane was appointed by national police commissioner General Riah Phiyega to investigate a criminal defamation case opened by Mabuza against Phosa.

Venter and Phosa’s business relationship ended acrimoniously in May last year. Venter has a criminal case pending against Phosa’s head of security, Peter van Zyl, for intimidation.

He alleges that Van Zyl “verbally and psychologically” abused him and this was what led him to resign.

Phosa, in turn, has laid four theft charges against Venter and instituted a civil claim for about R53?500.

Phosa has dismissed Venter’s affidavit as “perjury in the classical sense” and has accused Tsumane of “dirty games”.

Mathews Phosa says his former employee is lying and the spy report was delivered to him anonymously by a whistle-blower. Picture: Muntu Vilakazi/City Press

In the affidavit, which City Press has seen, Venter – who was Phosa’s house manager until his resignation – writes that he was on duty in March last year when Phosa’s associate Nick Elliot visited him.

“Mr Phosa asked me to fetch blank papers. But before he actually called me, he indicated to Mr Nick that he would draft a report and send it to Luthuli House to prove that the premier of Mpumalanga, Mr DD Mabuza, is indeed a spy,” says Venter’s statement.

“While Mr Phosa was scribbling?...?mention was made of Mr Mabuza’s name that he was once a spy working for the old order.

“Mention was also made of secret numbers during the conversation between the two gentlemen.”

Elliot spoke to City Press this week: “That is utter rubbish,” he said.

“The document was sent by my PA, who was helping Phosa, and I wasn’t there. This matter should be tested in court. [Venter] has misled someone, but he must not bring me into this.”

Venter alleges in the affidavit that he always packed Phosa’s bags before the former ANC treasurer-general travelled, but Phosa did not want him to touch the handwritten papers.

“I am convinced the scribbled papers had something to do with Mr Mabuza, and him being a spy for the then regime, as is alleged in the report that is in the newspapers,” continues the affidavit.

Venter declined to talk to City Press.

Phosa said he had been “trailing” Tsumane for six weeks as the policeman interviewed people about his relationship with Mabuza.

“Jan’s affidavit is perjury and I will open a criminal case against him in time,” he said.

“I’ve been following [Tsumane’s] activities closely and in due time I will comment on this.”

National police spokesperson Lieutenant General Solomon Makgale said there was “nothing untoward” in Tsumane being appointed to investigate the spy allegations.

“The investigation is progressing well,” Makgale said in a text message to City Press.

Mabuza believes the report is another attempt in a sustained campaign to unseat him as both premier and provincial ANC chairperson.

He has asked Zuma to set up a commission of inquiry into the spy allegations in a bid to clear his name.

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