Nomvula Mokonyane lied and should be prosecuted for corruption – Zondo

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Nomvula Mokonyane, the former minister of water and sanitation. Photo: Getty Images
Nomvula Mokonyane, the former minister of water and sanitation. Photo: Getty Images

POLITICS


The third report by the Zondo Commission has recommended that former Gauteng premier and government minister Nomvula Mokonyane be prosecuted for corruption after finding that there was sufficient evidence to establish that she had accepted gratification from Bosasa and in doing so had breached her constitutional and legislative duties as well as ethical obligations.

The report recounted the numerous ways in which Bosasa, which was bidding for government tenders, had benefited Mokonyane and her family members. It also found the she directed the company to assist the ANC and rejected her evidence that she had nothing to do with it.

Amongst others, the report asserts that she received monthly payments of R50 000, that Bosasa paid for her 40th birthday party at the Victorian Guesthouse near the Bosasa office park, and that it funded and arranged the catering and other aspects of many ANC events on a widespread basis. It also provided lavishly for the Christmas needs of Mokonyane and her family, including large volumes of cold drinks and alcohol – including premium whisky brands.

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The company also attended to maintenance problems and problems with the security system on an ongoing basis at her homes, and also provided hired cars for Mokonyane’s daughter when she was on vacation from her studies in China.

On the evidence of Bosasa paying for her birthday party, the commission said Mokonyane had denied, more than once, that there had ever been a party (of any kind or at any time) for her at the Victoria Guesthouse in Krugersdorp, but changed her story when confronted with the evidence of the owner of the guesthouse.

The report reads: 

Her explanation for failing to disclose this in her initial testimony was wanting. In this regard, she stated that she did not mention the 40th birthday party because she was 'preoccupied' by Mr Agrizzi’s assertions that it was her 50111 birthday party with a 'Break a Leg' theme.

“A birthday marking the passage of a decade in one’s life is invariably well remembered. All the more so where, on her version, she walked into the venue expecting a private family dinner and found that a surprise party with a large number of guests had been arranged for her,” reads the report.

The commission concluded that Mokonyane was shown to have been dishonest in her evidence when she initially denied that any party had ever been held for her at the Guesthouse.

“Significantly, Mokonyane agreed that it would be entirely inappropriate for Bosasa to have paid for her birthday party. Given her dishonesty about the dinner, the conclusion is unavoidable that she was well aware of Bosasa’s gifts.”

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It also found that her denial that Bosasa made payments of R50 000 to her monthly, or, at least on three occasions that Bosasa executive Angelo Agrizzi said he had personal knowledge of, is not credible and falls to be rejected as a lie. The commission also rejected her denial of knowledge that she was assisted with the installation of security and maintenance work at her house.

In assessing all the evidence the commission concluded that there were clearly extensive attempts by Bosasa and its leaders, through various forms of inducement and gain, to influence Mokonyane in her position as a member of the national executive, the provincial executive and office bearer in organs of state.

“In terms of section 96 of the Constitution, a member of cabinet may not expose him/herself to any situation involving the risk of a conflict between his/her official responsibilities and his/her private interests.

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“Further, he/she must act in accordance with a code of ethics prescribed by national legislation, i.e. the Executive Members’ Ethics Act and the Executive Ethics Code published in terms of section 2 of that Act.”

It ruled that in terms of the Executive Ethics Code, she was not permitted to use her position, or any information entrusted to her to:

. Enrich herself or improperly benefit any other person;

. Expose herself to any situation involving the risk of a conflict between her official responsibilities and her financial and/or personal interests;

. Solicit or accept a gift or benefit which (i) is in return for any benefit received from her in her official capacity; (ii) constitutes improper influence of her; or constitutes an attempt to influence her in the performance of her duties.

“The matter is referred to the appropriate authorities for further investigation and prosecution of Mokonyane on charges of corruption,” concluded Zondo.


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Rapule Tabane 

Political Editor

+27 11 713 9001
Rapule.Tabane@citypress.co.za
www.citypress.co.za
69 Kingsway Rd, Auckland Park

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