Former South African president Jacob Zuma, who was forced to resign last year under a cloud of corruption scandals, allegedly accepted monthly bribes from a security firm, according to a witness at a judicial inquiry.
Mr Angelo Agrizzi, ex-chief operating officer of the Bosasa contracting company, has given days of bombshell testimony to the Zondo commission probing allegations of government corruption under Mr Zuma.
Mr Agrizzi said Bosasa made monthly payments of some 300,000 rand (around $2,200) to the Jacob Zuma foundation.
The money, hidden in a luxury bag, was received through foundation president Dudu Myeni, the former chair of South African Airways, Mr Agrizzi alleged.
Mr Agrizzi said on one occasion the Bosasa CEO at the time, Mr Gavin Watson, also went to Mr Zuma’s private home and “personally brought” him the money.
“He (Watson) said he personally delivered it to Jacob Zuma, put the bag next to him… and asked him the question: ‘Does Dudu give you your money every month?’ And the answer was ‘Yes’,” Mr Agrizzi said.
The commission headed by Judge Ray Zondo is investigating a web of murky deals involving government officials, the wealthy Gupta family and state-owned entities during the Zuma’s nine-year reign.
In exchange for the payments, Mr Agrizzi said Bosasa — renamed African Global Operations in 2017 — was looking to halt a police inquiry into suspicions that the company used illicit methods to obtain public contracts.
Mr Agrizzi last week told the commission that he had supplied an array of services for high-profile members of Mr Zuma’s government and the ruling African National Congress (ANC).
The current minister of Environmental Affairs Nomvula Mokonyane, who served as Mr Zuma’s minister of Water and Sanitation between 2014 and 2018, got 50,000 rand in cash monthly, according to Mr Agrizzi.
The people accused will have a chance to appear before the commission at a later date.