Bosasa paid Dudu Myeni R300,000 a month, Angelo Agrizzi claims
As a close ally of Jacob Zuma, the former SAA chair was seen as powerful and ‘could swing deals’, so no questions were asked about her requests
Former SA Airways chair Dudu Myeni received R300,000 a month from Bosasa, allegedly for the Jacob Zuma Foundation, the company’s former COO Angelo Agrizzi told the state capture commission on Monday.
“Gavin Watson would tell us that he is paying her R300,000 a month and he always said he hopes she is giving it to [Jacob] Zuma. The payment was for the foundation apparently, the Jacob Zuma Foundation,” Agrizzi said.
Myeni, an ally of the former president, is the chair of his foundation.
Agrizzi said the money for Myeni was always paid in cash, and he knew this because he would have to arrange to “pack the money”. He was also present on a few occassions when Watson himself delivered the money to Myeni, he said.
This is the eighth day that Agrizzi is testifying at the commission.
Agrizzi, who was Bosasa CEO Gavin Watson’s right-hand man at the company, has been testifying about corruption and bribes relating to the firm’s contracts with the government.
He told the commission on Monday about an incident when Myeni was given a Louis Vuitton handbag with R300,000 cash inside.
Agrizzi said that early one morning Watson asked how he could impress Myeni, to which Agrizzi said he had no idea, but “ask my wife”.
“My wife said to him ‘you should go buy a nice handbag, Louis Vuitton’.”
This was arranged and the handbag, with the money inside, was delivered to Myeni, he said.
Agrizzi said he saw Watson place the money in the bag.
“It was delivered to Dudu Myeni because afterwards when I saw her again she actually thanked me for the bag because she thought it was a nice bag, she thought it made a good statement for her,” he said.
Agrizzi said Bosasa also organised high-end functions for Myeni and the Jacob Zuma Foundation and provided security services at her home. No questions were asked when she made these requests.
“She was very important, she could swing deals. She was powerful,” he said.
Agrizzi said Myeni was “close to the president and calls the shots”.
Agrizzi said numerous meeting were organised at Nkandla, and at one stage Watson was concerned that Zuma was not receiving the R300,000 from Myeni.
"Watson said we must pack it [the money] and he would deliver it himself and make sure he [Zuma] was getting the money from Myeni," Agrizzi said.
“[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.”
Agrizzi told the commission he did not think the Jacob Zuma Foundation ever received the money, and that it was actually intended for Zuma himself. However, he did not have proof of this and was merely and assumption.
"Surely if it was for foundation it would be via EFT. Maybe it was for a foundation but why would you want it in cash,” he said.
His testimony continues.