Johannesburg – Charges of treason, extortion, racketeering, fraud and forgery have been laid against the three Gupta brothers and Duduzane Zuma by the Organisation Undoing Tax Abuse (OUTA) at the Randburg police station on Thursday.
OUTA’s Chief Operating Officer, Ben Theron, said in a statement that the charges were in connection with allegations of state capture, adding that the charges are ‘designed for combating organised crime’.
The 58-page affidavit gives details on how President Jacob Zuma allegedly used his influence improperly to provide assistance to the three brothers since he became president in 2009 - with those who acquiesced to the Guptas being placed in crucial positions after their CVs were sent to his son, Duduzane.
Theron, in his affidavit, said those linked to the Guptas and Duduzane include Minister of Mineral Resources Mosebenzi Zwane, Director-General of Public Enterprises Richard Seleke and former Eskom board member Collin Matjila.
Zwane and Seleke have already had charges of high treason laid against them.
The affidavit also claims that Duduzane and the Guptas were aware of Cabinet reshuffles before they took place.
With this information at their disposal, they were able to advance their business goals by influencing who was reshuffled.
Although the affidavit detailing the allegations contains the names of 14 prominent associates within or around Zuma’s circle, the focus of the charges is squarely on brothers Atul, Ajay and Rajesh "Tony" Gupta, and Duduzane.
This is because the four have allegedly benefited from illegitimate deals that have been endorsed by various state officials, allowing them to accumulate obscene amounts of money and thriving business empires.
"The Guptas benefitted from numerous high-value deals including getting the enormous R5.3bn kickback from Transnet’s locomotive deal and a R66m kickback from Neotel arising from a Transnet deal," Theron said in the statement.
Duduzane, on the other hand, has numerous business interests which have a direct or indirect relation to the Gupta family.
Theron questioned Duduzane's swift rise within Sahara, saying that at the age of 26, he was already on the board of directors of the computer company despite having no real qualifications to show.
The 14 others linked to the trio and Zuma include:
- Jacinto Rocha, a senior official in the Department of Mineral Resources (DMR) who helped in the acquisition of mining rights.
- Lakela Kaunda, the Chief Operations Officer (COO) in the Presidency.
- Bongi Ngema-Zuma who is one of the president’s wives.
- Duduzile Zuma, the twin sister of Duduzane and the president’s daughter.
- Iqbal Sharma, the chair of Transnet’s acquisitions and disposals committee when train deals were signed.
- Brian Molefe, former Eskom CEO
- Anoj Singh, former CFO of Transnet and current (suspended) CFO of Eskom.
- Mogokare Richard Seleke, Director General of Public Enterprises
- Mosebenzi Zwane, Minister of Mineral Resources
- Faith Muthambi, Minister of Public Service and Administration, and former minister of communications.
- Collin Matjila, who served on Eskom’s board.
- Minister of Public Enterprises Lynne Brown (Also read: #GuptaLeaks: How the family encircled Lynne Brown)
- Ben Ngubane, a former chairman of the Eskom board.
- Mark Pamensky, an Eskom director