Cape Town - A cache of emails detailing correspondence between the Gupta family and their associates has blown the lid off damning revelations about how deeply entrenched they are in government dealings.
The trail of emails, obtained by City Press, reveals how the Gupta family has managed to do business with government, ingratiate themselves with senior officials, and even attempted to assist President Jacob Zuma with moving his family to Dubai.
The emails also reveal how the Guptas seduced a number of senior state actors in their bid to capture government departments and state-owned entities.
The evidence keeps mounting, but this is everything we know so far:
Zuma's Dubai exit plan
One of the most astonishing emails is from Gupta-owned Sahara Computers' chief executive officer (CEO), Ashu Chawla, to Zuma's son Duduzane. It contains a draft letter from the president to Abu Dhabi Crown Prince General Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, and shows how close Zuma is to the Guptas.
Gupta lawyers respond: 'Politically motivated' emails leaked to influence ANC NEC
The Gupta family's lawyer Gert van der Merwe says it appears potentially damning emails leaked to Sunday newspapers were specifically timed to influence the African National Congress' National Executive Committee (NEC) meeting.
"It is obviously a well placed and a well, let's say, pitched effort to gain some political momentum and perception. And I assume, it is with regard to do with what is happening in Irene today [Sunday]."
Opposition parties react: Zuma, Guptas lead SA's shadow criminal state - Maimane
Democratic Alliance leader Mmusi Maimane on Sunday said that leaked Gupta emails published in the weekend papers amounted to concrete proof of a "shadow criminal state in South Africa", which is led by the Gupta and Zuma families.
This after the City Press and Sunday Times led with articles based on alleged leaked internal Gupta staff emails, which appear to outline the extreme influence the Gupta family has over President Jacob Zuma and his associates.
"Today's [Sunday's] reports reveal written proof in the form of a string of emails which confirm that South Africa has been captured by the Guptas," said Maimane in a statement.
#GuptaEmails: Read the documents
The first batch of leaked documents become available.
A cache of damning emails between members of the Gupta family, some of their trusted lieutenants and Duduzane Zuma has brought forward fresh details on the mechanics of the Guptas' dubious state capture strategies.
Des van Rooyen invokes sub judice rule over renewed 'state capture' claims
Co-operative Governance Minister Des Van Rooyen will not be commenting on Sunday's media reports that the Guptas picked up the tab for his visit to Dubai in 2015 because the issue is sub judice, his office said.
"The Minister of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (Cogta), honourable Des van Rooyen noted with concern the articles that appeared today, 28 May 2017 in some Sunday newspapers," a brief statement read.
"The Minister emphasised that the issue[s] raised [in the] article are part of the broader legal review of the so-called state capture report, as such he will not comment on the matters that are sub judice."
WATCH: Four damning quotes from the #GuptaEmails
EXCLUSIVE: Waterkloof landing 'fall guy' directly linked to Guptas
The man at the centre of the Gupta family's landing of a private aircraft at Waterkloof Air Force Base in 2013 has, for the first time, been directly linked to the controversial family.
"Support whatever he wants," wrote an apparent Gupta insider in response to a request from Bruce Koloane, the government official who played a key role in helping the Guptas obtain permission to land a private aircraft at Waterkloof, for sponsoring the prizes at a private golf day Koloane appeared to have hosted in 2016.
The email, which for the first time directly links the Department of International Relations and Cooperation's (Dirco) former chief of state protocol to the controversial Gupta family, forms part of a huge batch of e-mails obtained by City Press, News24's sister publication.
Alleged Gupta associates react: 'There's no crime in talking to the Guptas' - Manyi
No independent institutions have found the Gupta family guilty of any wrongdoing, Progressive Professional Forum (PPF) head Mzwanele "Jimmy" Manyi has said.
Speaking to broadcaster Cape Talk on Monday night, Manyi was responding to reports at the weekend that he had approached the Gupta family, seeking positions for himself and attorney Xoliswa Mpongoshe at state-owned entities.
Two emails sent from Manyi's Gmail account to Sahara CEO Ashu Chawla in 2014 show how he mentioned, "as discussed with Tony [Gupta]", and then attached the two CVs. The emails form part of a huge batch of emails obtained by City Press, News24's sister publication.
Opposition parties react: DA opens criminal case against Zuma, 11 others
The DA opened a criminal case against President Jacob Zuma and 11 others at the Cape Town Central Police Station on Tuesday.
Accompanied by fellow MP and ex-prosecutor Glynnis Breytenbach, as well as MP Kevin Mileham, Maimane said their "preliminary indictment" was in response to weekend reports about leaked emails, purportedly substantiating claims of inappropriately close links between the controversial Gupta family and government ministers.
Buthelezi: My single visit to the Gupta home is not newsworthy
Inkatha Freedom Party leader Mangosuthu Buthelezi on Tuesday lashed out at a report detailing logistics for the single visit he made to the Gupta homestead in Saxonwold, Johannesburg.
Mention was made in The Times of an email his parliamentary office sent to Tony Gupta in 2016 requesting diabetic-friendly food for their lunch.
"It's absurd that this was considered newsworthy. When one is invited to lunch, the host routinely asks about one's dietary requirements," he said in a statement.
"For decades, my office has routinely advised that I am diabetic, and provides the necessary guidance."
Eskom-Tegeta hearing returns to Parliament amid #GuptaEmails leak
A hearing focusing on coal supply agreements between Eskom and Tegeta returned to Parliament on Tuesday, two days after emails allegedly linking the Guptas to state officials and ministers were leaked to the media.
On May 10, Parliament's standing committee on public accounts (Scopa) heard how Eskom's contract with Gupta-owned Tegeta Exploration and Resources for the supply of coal contained discrepancies, was poorly drafted, and was in contravention of supply chain management procedures.
This was according to a report done by PricewaterhouseCoopers.
#GuptaEmails: SA High Commissioner helped get Gupta a job as Consul
Ex-SAA board member Rajesh Naithani didn't only give the Gupta family inside information on what was happening at SAA, he also appeared to work with the High Commissioner in India in an attempt to get Anil Gupta a job as a consul.
In a tranche of emails obtained by City Press on the Gupta family and their businesses, there is a series of emails from Naithani, an Indian molecular biologist who was on the boards of both SAA and SA Express, to Sahara computers chief executive Ashu Chawla.
Naithani apparently flew from India to SA for board meetings and allegedly sent Chawla inside information on what was happening at the national airline.
Naithani apparently also asked for a position on the board of Transnet after he was removed from the SAA board.
#GuptaEmails: Family advised to lay criminal charges against media houses
Members of the controversial Gupta family have been advised by their lawyer to lay criminal charges against media houses which published the "leaked" emails between themselves, their associates, employees and some senior government officials.
They were also advised to lay charges of crimen injuria against journalists and editors in their personal capacity, lawyer Gert van der Merwe told News24 on Wednesday.
He met with his clients on Tuesday afternoon, following the publication of the explosive emails, which appeared in both the City Press and Sunday Times over the weekend.
EXPOSED: #GuptaEmails show Ngubane, Guptas linked to CAR 'bribe' talks
A failed bid to secure a lucrative oil concession in the Central African Republic (CAR) ties a company linked to Eskom chairperson Ben Ngubane and Gupta associate Salim Essa to talks involving the payment of "behind the scenes incentives" to government officials in that country.
Emails and documents obtained by News24's sister publication City Press show that in 2013 - mere months after 13 South African soldiers died while trying to suppress a violent coup in the CAR - the Guptas were sent an email that detailed how a $6m payment would help another company secure the same oil block a Gupta-linked company would later try to obtain.
An email forwarded to Rajesh "Tony" Gupta, the youngest of the Gupta trio, in July 2013, apparently set in motion an effort by Gade Oil and Gas, whose directors at that stage were Essa and Ngubane, to secure exploration rights to an oil block in the north-east of the CAR.
#GuptaEmails: Inside the £100 000 a month media spin machine
The extent of a multimillion-rand spin campaign that aimed to polarise South Africans and divert attention from scandals involving President Jacob Zuma and the Guptas is laid bare in the #GuptaEmails obtained by City Press.
Among the bundle of documents are communications between the London-based public relations company Bell Pottinger and Gupta employees.
The emails suggest building a narrative to discredit the critics of the Guptas, and hint at how it could use the African National Congress or constituent bodies to defend the family against the media.
At the helm of the media spin machine was Duduzane Zuma, who met with Bell Pottinger partner Victoria Geoghegan to build a "long-term partnership" to "turn the tide of the country's trajectory".
#GuptaEmails: Hundreds of thousands more leaked documents to be made available
The extent of the Gupta family's alleged power over South Africa and its leaders could possibly be laid bare when between 100 000 and 200 000 leaked Gupta emails are expected to be made available to journalists soon.
A portion of these emails were leaked to the City Press and the Sunday Times, who broke the story at the weekend. Ongoing coverage of those leaks has continued on News24, City Press and TimesLive.
Daily Maverick's investigative unit Scorpio and amaBhungane said in an editorial on Thursday that they had access to a larger trove of emails and would make them available to many "bona fide journalists", along with reporting on stories emanating from them.
A first-class life: It must be nice being Duduzane Zuma
The first son has come a long way from being an 18-year-old trainee computer technician who needed a job. The Gupta family has seen to that.
For Duduzane Zuma, it’s now an R18-million apartment in the world's highest building, the Burj Khalifa; luxury stays at Dubai's Oberoi Hotel; a lavish wedding at the five-star Zimbali Lodge; and first-class air travel for a December holiday.
Zuma Junior was booked on a number of first class flights – to Dubai and in one case on to Moscow – the tickets for which appear in a tranche of emails obtained by City Press over the weekend.
In all cases, his electronic tickets were sent to him by Sahara Computers chief executive Ashu Chawla.
#GuptaEmails: Atul wanted Ebola 'cure' sent to Dlamini-Zuma
Atul Gupta in 2014 claimed to have stumbled upon a "100% cure solution" for the devastating Ebola outbreak that was claiming the lives of thousands of West Africans, and asked for information on this supposed cure to be sent to then African Union Commission chairperson Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma.
Emails obtained by City Press, News24's sister publication, show that Gupta was contacted by Gagan Kumar, an Indian businessman from a controversial producer of traditional Indian Ayurvedic medicine, in November 2014.
"As per your talked with p p Acharya Balkrishan ji maharaj we are sending you detail [sic]," Kumar wrote Gupta.
The email's subject line read "Ebola Research Paper", and the mail included a 42-page document detailing the Patanjali Foundation's work on "Ebola Viral Research".
The Acharya Balkrishan referred to by Kumar is in fact Acharya Balkrishan, also known as Balkrishna Suvedi, the managing director of Patanjali Ayurved Limited, an Indian consumer goods company with annual revenue of around R20bn.
#GuptaEmails: Tony Gupta allegedly called Saxonwold security guards 'monkeys'
In 2012, Tony "Rajesh" Gupta allegedly called security guards at his Saxonwold house "monkeys" after they did not respond when he called out to them.
The alleged racist incident was written down in a complaint to G4S Security, about one of their security guards, by a Sahara employee. The letter of complaint forms part of hundreds of leaked Gupta emails obtained by City Press.
The guard, according to the letter, was appointed as an armed officer at the gate for access control duties. However, he always wanted to be a driver.
"He was found to be not competent as a driver, by his own manager," the email said.
The email said that, one night, the guard was "engrossed in some other activity" and he, along with another guard on duty, did not hear Tony Gupta calling them repeatedly.
#GuptaEmails show Guptas involved in R570m Free State dairy project
(Elsje du Toit, Netwerk24)
The #GuptaLeaks emails have confirmed that the controversial Gupta family was also involved in the R570m dairy project in Vrede, in the Free State, Netwerk24 reported on Thursday.
Reports that the Guptas were involved in the project first surfaced in 2013, but the Free State government denied it.
According to emails in the possession of City Press, the Guptas had attended talks about the project and said the Free State government "showed great interest".
Earlier it was reported that the National Treasury said the Free State Department of Agriculture was still financing the dairy project to the tune of R46m for the 2016-2017 financial year, but "no more money had been allocated in the Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) of 2016".
JUNE - WEEK 2
Rand gains as ANC contradicts Zuma on #GuptaEmails, calls for probe
The rand gained sharply on Friday as the African National Congress (ANC) contradicted President Jacob Zuma regarding the leak of Gupta emails in the media, which implicated him and other officials in state capture.
The rand edged from R12.94/$ to R12.88/$ in a space of 45 minutes on Friday, after Reuters first published the statement from the ruling party.
"The statement appeared to contradict Zuma, who said at a parliamentary session on Thursday that he was not interested in 'hearsay' published in newspapers, although he did not address the latest leaks directly," Reuters reported.
Zuma told Parliament the day before that a probe into state capture would help "recover the facts and remove rumours".
However, the ANC used far stronger language, saying that the emails "call into question the integrity and credibility of the government".
Government must act on #GuptaEmails to protect integrity - ANC
The African National Congress has admitted that information emerging from the #GuptaEmails bring into question the integrity and credibility of the state.
The party has called on government to establish a process of establishing the veracity of the emails.
"Government must act to protect its integrity and credibility," ANC spokesperson Zizi Kodwa told News24.
Gigaba washes his hands of #GuptaEmail links
Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba has questioned the veracity of the leaked Gupta emails, saying he has done nothing wrong in his capacity as a minister.
Gigaba was speaking on the sidelines of a briefing on new regulations being introduced requiring mandatory rotation of audit firms to maintain their independence.
Responding to reports that under his leadership at Home Affairs, senior officials were involved in fast-tracking visa processes for members of the Gupta family, as well as the appointment of board members at state-owned enterprises during his time as public enterprise minister, Gigaba said there was no causal link that could be drawn to him.
"Nobody has given me these emails, nobody has told me how these emails were obtained. Whether through proper means, whether or not they have been fabricated, I don’t know."
#GuptaEmails confirm a 'silent coup' - SACP
The Gupta family's leaked emails confirm the depth and extent of their parasitic influence on government, the South African Communist Party said on Friday.
"This barrage of emails we have been seeing over the last days clearly confirms the position of the SACP, but broadens the understanding of the depth of parasitism, rent-seeking, the scale of it," first deputy secretary Jeremy Cronin said on the sidelines of the party's central committee meeting in Johannesburg.
The SACP was the first member of the ANC-led tripartite alliance to call for a judicial commission of inquiry into state capture.
"The scale of the activities we are seeing, the shadow state that we are seeing as said by the South African Council of Churches, correctly we believe, all of these are indications of what some have called a silent coup."
#GuptaEmails: Guptas asked to buy airtime for ANC election agents
The Guptas were asked to buy airtime for 362 ANC agents in the Free State a day before the 2014 general elections, emails leaked from the family have revealed.
On May 6, 2014, Mosidi Motsemme, an employee at the Free State provincial legislature, emailed a list of party agents to Free State premier Ace Magashule's son Tshepiso, with the following request:
"Attached please receive a list of FS ANC party agents in need of airtime, they all use MTN. It will be appreciated if air time amounting to R120 per person could be loaded today, 06 May 2014."
This was "as per directive of FS ANC Chaiperson (sic) ". Ace Magashule is the ANC's Free State chairperson.
The list was also forwarded to a person named Kabelo Nthongoa, who forwarded it Tony Gupta.
#GuptaEmails inquiry must be in Parliament - DA tells ANC
The Democratic Alliance wants the African National Congress to ensure a state capture inquiry takes place in Parliament, and not anywhere else, after it agreed a probe is needed into the #GuptaLeaks.
"The DA believes that it is deeply disingenuous that the ANC is calling for an inquiry into the capture of its own government," DA national spokesperson Phumzile van Damme said on Friday.
"There have been numerous opportunities for the ANC to take action against its captured president and its Gupta captors, but it has not done so."
amaBhungane and Scorpio #GuptaLeaks: Duduzane Zuma's UAE residency confirmed
(amaBhungane and Scorpio)
On October 10, 2015 Duduzane Zuma, President Jacob Zuma's son was given residency of Dubai in the United Arab Emirates, a few months before the Gupta family had penned two letters to the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, General Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan and Vice President and Prime Minister, Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Moktoum, stating Zuma and his family intended to make the UAE a second home.
Duduzane's profession on the coveted residency is listed as "investor" and his sponsor "Lion Gate Electronics Trading".
The permit was issued on October 10, 2015 and expires on October 4, 2018. It was issued a few months before two letters which appear to have been drafted on behalf of President Zuma were circulated between Tony Gupta to Sahara CEO, Ashu Chawla and Duduzane Zuma.
Leaked emails have also revealed that two months later, in December 2015, Duduzane, with the help of the Gupta family, bought an R18-million apartment situated in the Burj Khalifa, the tallest building in the world. Duduzane, through Wens Holdings Ltd, co-owned with the Gupta family and registered in Dubai bought the luxury apartment.
#GuptaEmails: DA lays charges against Eskom CFO
DA leader Mmusi Maimane has laid further charges in the wake of revelations contained in the leaked Gupta emails.
On Thursday, DA MP Natasha Mazzone said a chain of the leaked emails reveal that Anoj Singh, currently Eskom's CFO, was whisked off on at least four suspiciously timed Gupta-funded trips to Dubai.
This happened during the period Transnet awarded a R1.8bn tender to Neotel, resulting in a R36m kickback to a Gupta company.
Singh was Transnet's CFO at the time.
On Friday, further emails brought to light that he was also treated to a nine-day trip to Dubai in December 2015, shortly after the Guptas' Tegeta obtained Optimum Coal Holdings, which supplies Eskom with coal, from Glencore. The deal was worth more than R2bn.
"This is a textbook example of bribery and corruption," Maimane said.
Lords of all they survey
Whenever Atul Gupta arrived at The New Age's offices in Midrand, some of his staff from India would bend and touch his feet.
In India, touching someone's feet is the highest form of respect, reserved for priests, gods and gurus, and revered elders such as parents and grandparents.
In return, the middle Gupta brother, at the helm of the family's media operations, would smile beatifically, raise his hand, and murmur something to the underlings who grovelled before him.
Although the former staff members who told City Press this story were never close enough to hear what he said, Atul Gupta may have responded in the traditional way, by raising his hand and blessing the kneeler with the Sanskrit phrase, Ayushman bhava – "may you live long".
The tranche of emails obtained by City Press last weekend appears to indicate that displays of reverence such as these are what the country's unofficial first family expects to be shown.
They have revealed how intimately they are acquainted with policy minutiae and how their ministerial minions have briefed them on Cabinet meetings.
The emails also show that, while the Guptas' money may not buy them love, it can buy a whole lot of bootlicking.
Zuma Jr's sexy email ladies
While the #GuptaLeaks saga has exposed an unfolding political scandal, it has also shed light on a "scandal" of a different kind: Duduzane Zuma’s complicated love life.
The leaked emails reveal how several women had the hots for the president's handsome son.
Several raunchy emails, intended for Duduzane, were sent to President Jacob Zuma's private email account in 2015 – the same year Duduzane married Shanice Stork at a lavish wedding at the five-star Zimbali Lodge in Ballito.
We now know the Gupta family helped to pay for the nuptials and that their company chief executives were involved in arranging it.
On March 3 2015, two months before his wedding, he received four emails from Cape Town-based former fashion editor and freelance stylist Malikah Hajee.
The subject line of one of her emails reads: "Remember what you missing! (sic)"
When City Press called Hajee, she confirmed that she had received an email with questions from our reporter, but didn’t wish to comment.
#GuptaEmails reveal how ex-Oakbay CEO acted as Zwane's spin doctor
An email between Nazeem Howa, former CEO of the Gupta-owned Oakbay, Tony Gupta and President Jacob Zuma's son Duduzane shows how the family and their associates dictated to Mineral Resources Minister Mosebenzi Zwane what he should say to the media.
Howa on February 2, 2016 wrote to Duduzane Zuma and Tony Gupta to ask their input on altogether 14 questions he anticipated Zwane could expect from the journalists. He also drafted comprehensive answers for Zwane.
The email, which is part of a tranche of emails revealing a multitude of new allegations of state capture, is more proof of the profound influence the Gupta family, its business Oakbay and the President's son wield over state officials – Zwane in this instance.
Howa's email to Duduzane Zuma and Tony Gupta was sent on February 2, 2016 – a few days before the minister addressed delegates and the media at the 2016 Mining Indaba that was held in Cape Town from February 8 to 11 in which he asked for help with the answers he drafted for Zwane.
"Perhaps I can sit with someone this side to help me polish and add to the answers," Howa’s email read. "Let’s chat when you have a chance to review."
Zuma does not own a 'Dubai palace', says Presidency
The Presidency on Sunday slammed a media report suggesting that President Jacob Zuma owned a R330-million Dubai mansion purchased by the Gupta family.
"The story in the Sunday Times newspaper...that President Jacob Zuma owns a "palace" in Dubai is a fabrication," said presidential spokesperson, Bongani Ngqulunga, in a statement.
"President Zuma does not own any property outside South Africa and has not requested anybody to buy property for him abroad."
Ngqulunga also said that the president had not received or seen emails mentioned in the article – and furthermore, he had "no knowledge of them".
News24 partners with amaBhungane and Daily Maverick to expose #GuptaLeaks
Yes, we have all written about the scandals surrounding President Jacob Zuma’s presidency from even before he became president of the ANC in 2007, including former public protector Thuli Madonsela’s scathing report on state capture.
But never before has the depth and scale of the rot been exposed like now through the #GuptaLeaks. The stench is unbearable.
We have therefore decided to put competition aside for a moment and co-operate with our colleagues at amaBhungane, the independent investigative non-profit, and the Daily Maverick, which was first approached with the emails.
The moment is too big to let competition stand in the way of our national duty.
Over the next few days and weeks some of the country’s finest investigative journalists will together trawl through thousands and thousands of pages of messages and documents to put together a much clearer picture of state capture than what we know at this point.
Their work will be published on News24, the Daily Maverick and amaBhungane simultaneously.
#GuptaLeaks: Despite denials, Free State dairy farm was huge cash spinner for Guptas
(amaBhungane and Scorpio)
The emails and documents leaked from the heart of the Gupta empire provide mounting evidence that the president’s friends amassed a fortune offshore by preying on South African state contracts using their political contacts.
Now we can show how taxpayers were bled via a controversial dairy project. The evidence shows:
• R84-million was sucked to a Gupta offshore company after the Free State government paid R114-million to a contractor.
• Mosebenzi Zwane went on a Gupta-sponsored India jaunt after the provincial agriculture department, where he was MEC, approved the project.
The #GuptaLeaks have unravelled four years worth of denials by the Gupta spin machine over the family’s involvement in the controversial dairy project at Vrede in the Free State.
#GuptaLeaks: The 'Gift' that keeps on giving
(amaBhungane and Scorpio)
The Guptas dished out personal and political largesse to the sons of Free State Premier Ace Magashule. In turn, one son opened doors to Magashule’s office, where staff appeared to do the Guptas’ bidding.
In much the same way that Duduzane Zuma was apparently groomed, the #GuptaLeaks suggest that Magashule’s sons were similarly primed to become Gupta intermediaries.
Magashule’s staff officially invited a senior Indian politician to South Africa on a Gupta associate’s request. His son Tshepiso "Gift" Magashule then forwarded the official correspondence to Tony Gupta, amaBhungane reports.
#GuptaLeaks: How Guptas went behind government's back on Dalai Lama
(amaBhungane and Scorpio)
While the leaked tranche of Gupta emails reveal the government and the Guptas to have maintained very close channels of communication over recent years, they did not share everything. It may have displeased the Guptas’ pals in high places, for instance, to learn that the family was hoping to persuade the Dalai Lama to attend an ANN7 event in 2014 as an honoured guest.
"Your Holiness," began the letter signed by former Oakbay Investments CEO Nazeem Howa.
"I write to you on behalf of the shareholders and management of African News Network, South Africa’s youngest and most technologically advanced television news station, to invite you to be our special and honoured guest on September 6, 2014, at the inaugural South African of The Year awards ceremony which will take place as part of our first anniversary celebratioofn" [sic].
The letter was dated August 18, 2014, meaning that ANN7 was giving the Dalai Lama under three weeks’ notice of the event they wanted him to attend, amaBhungane reports.
The #GuptaEmails saga continues.