Failure to protect witnesses will reduce Zondo inquiry into 'state capture circus' - Sanco

2019-08-30 17:46
Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo. (Felix Dlangamandla, Netwerk24)

Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo. (Felix Dlangamandla, Netwerk24)

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The South African National Civic Organisation (Sanco) in the North West has called for the protection of witnesses who appear before the judicial commission of inquiry into state capture. 

"Law enforcement agencies have a responsibility to safeguard key witnesses for successful conviction if the process to restore confidence in public institutions is to be realised," said Sanco provincial chairperson Paul Sebegoe in a statement issued on Friday.

He added the failure to do so would reduce the commission to an "expensive circus and laughable reality show".

On Thursday, the commission, which is headed by Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo, heard a witness, who testified about a fraudulent contract involving SA Express, had fled South Africa, saying she feared for her safety.

The commission also heard Babadi Tlatsana, the director of Koroneka Trading and Projects, was at an undisclosed location and that her lawyer does not know where she is. 

READ: State capture witness flees SA after receiving threats

The inquiry heard in mid-June that Tlatsana's company was awarded a R51m contract with the SA Express to handle ground services at the Mahikeng and Pilanesberg airports without following a due procurement process.

Evidence leader advocate Kate Hofmeyr, quoting from an affidavit from Tlatsana's lawyer, said she had fled the country following threats and intimidation in the wake of her testimony, Fin24 reported.

On Friday, Sanco said: "It would be unforgivable and a travesty of justice for millions to be thrown into a commission that will simply entertain the public with fairytales while it seeks accountability for the country to move on.

"History will judge harshly those who are silent collaborators of state capture if they miss the opportunity to come clean." 

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Read more on:    sanco  |  raymond zondo  |  mahikeng  |  state capture commission of inquiry  |  politics

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