Zuma implicated in R8m fraudulent payment at Zondo commission

Former Transnet legal head, Siyabulela Mapoma, on Wednesday said the letter from the Presidency asked why the matter was not settled.

FILE: Former President Jacob Zuma addressing his supporters outside the state capture commission on 19 July 2019. Picture: Abigail Javier/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG – Former President Jacob Zuma was once again implicated at the state capture commission for writing a letter demanding that a fraudulent supplier should be paid R8 million for wheels that were not delivered.

Former Transnet legal head, Siyabulela Mapoma, on Wednesday said the letter from the Presidency asked why the matter was not settled.

Mapoma testified that then Minister Malusi Gigaba’s advisor told him that “number one” also wanted to know why former CEO Siyabonga Gama’s legal costs were not paid.

“The involvement of the Presidency in Transnet things (sic) was not strange to me because we had previously received a complaint from the Presidency about some litigation matter that we had,” Mapoma told the commission.

He said he was not surprised when Gigaba’s advisor, Siyabonga Mahlangu, told him that “number one” wanted Transnet to speed up payment of Gama’s legal costs even though the then CEO had lost a case against the SOE and the court had ordered him to pay costs to Transnet.

Mapoma also said Zuma had previously wanted to know why a supplier was not paid.

“Someone who had sued Transnet alleging that they delivered some wheels at Transnet rail engineering, suing Transnet for R8 million plus, and we defended this claim,” he said.

“Ultimately the plaintiff withdrew the claim,” said Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo.

Mapoma responded saying, “yes on the morning of the trial.”

Mapoma refused to pay Gama and told Gigaba’s advisor to stop putting pressure on him because he did not report to the minister or the president.

Zondo said 34 witnesses had already implicated Zuma and Mapoma could be witness number 35.

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