Nthimotse Mokhesi told the state capture commission on Monday that in hindsight he should not have entered into the deal, which saw businessman Edwin Sodi paying the money for his house.
A screenshot of Free State Housing HOD Nthimotse Mokhesi at the state capture commission on Monday, 28 September 2020. Picture: SABCNews/Youtube
JOHANNESBURG – Free State housing HOD Nthimotse Mokhesi has admitted to using a family trust to receive nearly R650,000 from a supplier who was awarded the R255 million asbestos project, but he did not disclose it.
Mokhesi told the state capture commission on Monday that in hindsight he should not have entered into the deal, which saw businessman Edwin Sodi paying the money for his house.
He claimed that it was an investment partnership, but the commission questioned him about why Sodi did not appear anywhere in the ownership documents.
Blackhead Consulting, a company that did not have any expertise to audit or remove asbestos, was paid R255 million for the job in the Free State.
Six months later, its director Sodi paid R650,000 to a family trust of Mokhesi to secure a R1 million bond for a house in Bloemfontein.
Mokhesi called it an investment agreement.
“You have to use some sort of a tax efficient structure,” he said.
He said Sodi helped him to buy the property because his credit rating had been affected by a South African Revenue Service (Sars) judgment, and he disclosed the trust that received the money, but not the investment.
Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo said: “One advantage of using the trust to enter into this transaction is that you would not have to disclose this amount because you didn’t get into the arrangement in your personal capacity.”
“I’s not an advantage, it’s a commercial…” Mokhesi said in response.
Zondo said: “It’s an advantage because you told me that Absa could not give you a full bond and you needed somebody in order to get accommodation beyond R1 million.”
Mokhesi’s lawyer, Advocate Dali Mpofu, repeatedly interjected to ensure that he did not answer any questions to incriminate himself.
WATCH: State capture commission proceedings