6 things we know about Cyril Ramaphosa, the Guptas & Bosasa

2019-07-26 16:59
President Cyril Ramaphosa. (Gallo Images/Sowetan/Esa Alexander)

President Cyril Ramaphosa. (Gallo Images/Sowetan/Esa Alexander)

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President Cyril Ramaphosa has sought to clarify whether he had meetings, interactions or dealings with any of the Gupta brothers or with anyone involved with Bosasa (now known as African Global Operations). 

This is all contained in an affidavit that Ramaphosa has submitted to the Judicial Commission of Inquiry into State Capture, Corruption and Fraud in the Public Sector including Organs of State.

The affidavit was made public on Friday by Deputy Chief Justice, Raymond Zondo. 

Here is what is contained in the six-page affidavit dated July 2, 2019:

1. The first time Cyril Ramaphosa met the Guptas

Ramaphosa and the Gupta brothers first met at a media briefing held by ANC officials after the 53rd Conference of the ANC in Bloemfontein, Free State on or about December 21, 2012.

"This took place when the newly elected officials of the ANC were presenting the resolutions taken at the Conference at a breakfast media briefing broadcast by the South African Broadcasting Corporation. I am not able to say which of the brothers I met at the time as I did not get to know their individual names," he said.

2. Ramaphosa was present when the Guptas asked the ANC for help over their frozen bank accounts.

Ramaphosa recalls discussing "matters of substance" when the Gupta brothers requested a meeting with ANC officials to discuss the closure of their bank accounts.

"One of them arrived for the meeting and I think it was Tony Gupta. At this meeting, held during April 2016, various issues were discussed, including the closure of the bank accounts of one of their businesses - Oakbay," he said.

3. Ramaphosa asked Tony Gupta about the Waterkloof landing.

The President says that in this meeting he raised the issues of the controversial Waterkloof landing and informed the Gupta brothers that they had placed the President [Jacob Zuma at the time] in an invidious position due to their actions.

"Tony Gupta's reaction was that permission for the plane to land had been obtained and given by the Indian High Commissioner," he added.

4. Angelo Agrizzi worked for a subsidiary of a company which Ramaphosa chaired.

Former Bosasa executive, Angelo Agrizzi worked for a Grantham Catering, a subsidiary of the Molope Group, which Ramaphosa was chair of  from 1996.

Agrizzi left the employ of Grantham Catering in 1997.

"It is entirely possible that I may have interacted with Mr Agrizzi at the time but I have no recollection of having done so," he said.

He adds that while his work at the Molope Group would mean that the company would have been in direct competition with Bosasa at the time, he "has no personal recollection" of interacting with Bosasa directors or employees at the time or being at the same events as them.

5. Bosasa boss Gavin Watson and director Trevor Mathenjwa attended Andile Ramaphosa's wedding in Uganda.

Fromer Bosasa CEO Gavin Watson and the company's director Trevor Mathenjwa attended the wedding of Ramaphosa's son with approximately 1 000 guests on August 4, 2018 in Uganda.

Ramaphosa states that between 150 and 200 of these 1 000 guests were from South Africa. He does not recall interacting with Watson and Mathenjwa at this event.

6. The ANC's 2016 elections call centre was based at Bosasa's offices.

The President recalls taking a tour of a call centre at Bosasa's head office in July or August of 2016.

"I remember interacting there with ANC volunteers and party officials but may well have also interacted with Bosasa employees that were present at the premises at the time.

"I had no knowledge at the time of the source of funding for this centre as these matters were the purview of the elections team," he said.

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Read more on:    bosasa  |  cyril  |  tony gupta  |  ramaphosa  |  gavin watson  |  zondo commission of inquiry
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