Siyabonga Gama.  Picture: ROBERT TSHABALALA
Siyabonga Gama. Picture: ROBERT TSHABALALA

Parliament’s portfolio committee on trade and industry has agreed to hold an inquiry into Transnet’s R50bn acquisition of 1,064 locomotives‚ the DA said on Friday.

The party said it was hoping to get answers after two failed attempts at extracting answers from Transnet CEO Siyabonga Gama‚ who appeared before the committee to answer for the many allegations that have dogged the purchase.

The allegations include the involvement of the Gupta family through associate Salem Essa’s Tequesta Group‚ which purportedly received R5.3bn in kickbacks from China South Rail‚ and the nature of the relationship between Gama and Essa in relation to the contracts.

"We know that state-owned enterprises such as Transnet have become ground-zero for the Guptas to rob and loot SA of its resources‚" DA representative on trade and industry Dean Macpherson said in a statement.

He said Transnet could not be allowed to get away with protecting one family at the expense of good governance and fighting corruption. "That’s why only a committee inquiry can finally get to the bottom of this mess and finally bring accountability to this incredible theatrical act which is costing South Africans billions."

Macpherson said the DA would fight hard to ensure the veil of secrecy around the contracts was finally lifted and that those who have stolen money are held accountable.

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