Zuma's son linked to Sishen firm

Johannesburg - In the past two weeks a relationship has developed between Imperial Crown Trading 289 (ICT), the company that obtained mineral rights in controversial circumstances in the world-famous Sishen mine, and President Jacob Zuma's flamboyant son, Duduzane Zuma.

In recent weeks sundry directorship reshufflings have taken place at ICT.

Duduzane Zuma (27) is, together with Jagdish Parekh, a director and shareholder at JIC Mining Services, a contractor mining company that mainly provides labour-broking services to mines. During the past two weeks Parekh has become a director of ICT and, according to him, owns 50% of this company.

This means that Parekh now owns 10.7% of the mineral rights in the Sishen mine - the world's biggest iron-ore mine at Kathu in the Northern Cape.

But it's highly unlikely that he owns this stake in his personal capacity - that would make him one of the richest people in the country overnight.

He probably represents JIC as the actual shareholder. Parekh is chief executive and a shareholder in JIC. Zuma Jnr also owns shares in JIC, and therefore in ICT.

According to the Department of Mineral Resources on May 1 last year ICT applied for 21.4% of the mineral rights in Sishen - the very day that Kumba Iron Ore applied for the same rights.

The rights had belonged to ArcelorMittal South Africa (Amsa), but had expired the day before, April 30 2009, because Amsa had failed to apply for their conversion to new-order rights in accordance with minerals legislation.

On March 17 the department awarded the rights to ICT. Kumba, which operated the mine, has appealed the decision and the Department of Mineral Resources is reviewing the decision.

During a media visit to the mine this week Kumba chief executive Chris Griffith said the group stood by the review of the decision.

Duduzane Zuma and his twin sister, Duduzile, are well known for their high living.

About 600 people were invited to their birthday party at the Inanda Club in Sandton last year - guests included the country's most glittering personalities, such as Khanyi Mbau, Julius Malema, president of the ANC Youth League, and Tansey Coetzee, a former Miss South Africa.

The younger Zuma spent Christmas last year on one of the world's biggest and most luxurious passenger liners, the Oasis of the Seas, occupying a double-story suite costing between R150 000 and R250 000 a week.

His twin sister was appointed to the board of Sahara Computers, one of the country's largest computer companies, six months after her father became president of the ANC in 2007.

She lent her father support during his rape trial in 2007, acting as a character witness at the hearing.

Her mother, Kate Mansho, had married the future president in 1976. They had five children. In 2000 she committed suicide.

- Sake24.com

For business news in Afrikaans, go to Sake24.com.

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