Newsdeck

Zondo Asks South Africa Authorities to Probe Prison-Food Tenders

By Bloomberg 1 February 2019
Caption
Deputy chief justice Ray Zondo chairs the first day of the judicial commission of inquiry into state capture held in Johannesburg, South Africa, 20 August 2018. The official proclamation of the commission in the Government Gazette is that the commission is to inquire, investigate and make recommendations into any and all allegations of state capture, corruption and fraud in the public sector with note to the Gupta brothers, former president Jacob Zuma and his son, Duduzane Zuma. EPA-EFE/KIM LUDBROOK

The head of a judicial panel probing corruption in South Africa directed the authorities to investigate allegations that almost 1 billion rand ($75 million) was paid to services company Bosasa to provide catering in the nation’s prisons without it doing the requisite work.

“There was no labor from Bosasa, it was the inmates that cooked,” Dennis Bloem, who chaired parliament’s portfolio committee on correctional services from 2004 to 2009 while he was a member of the ruling African National Congress, told the panel Friday. “The only thing that Bosasa was doing was to give inmates a certificate for training.”

The commission of inquiry headed by Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo was set up to probe the looting of taxpayer funds during former President Jacob Zuma’s tenure. Over the past two weeks, Angelo Agrizzi, who served as Bosasa’s chief operating officer from 1999 to 2016, revealed how the company paid politicians and officials bribes to secure contracts and avoid prosecution.

One of Bosasa’s catering tenders that was awarded in July 2004 ran for three years and was worth 240 million rand ($18 million) a year, said Bloem, now a member of the Congress of the People, a small opposition party. Bosasa’s contracts ran until at least 2014, he said.

If Bloem’s testimony is true, “then the Department of Correctional Services was paying Bosasa millions of rands for absolutely nothing or very little,’’ Zondo said. DM

Gallery

In other news...

The South African economy is choking harder than the Proteas. Although to be choking you have to actually be eating and the Proteas seem to be on some sort of juice cleanse-like fast…*

Back to the economy: In the first quarter the GDP dive-bombed by a whopping 3.2%. The sense of futility can paralyse us into inaction and moaning. But it’s times like these that call for effort and action, no matter how small. Yes, South Africa is hurting. Yes the ravaged economy is evident everywhere you look. But you can make a difference, in your own personal way and by supporting independent media like Daily Maverick. We’ve pledged to continue the fight through producing incisive and impactful investigations and analysis, the same way we have done every day for the last decade.

By becoming a Maverick Insider you can help us keep doing what we do, so that you and others who can’t afford it, can keep reading the truth. For whatever amount you choose, you can support DM and it only takes a minute.

Support Daily Maverick→Payment options

*Proteas, you know we love you. We’d just love you more if you won occasionally...


Comments - share your knowledge and experience

Please note you must be a Maverick Insider to comment. Sign up here or if you are already an Insider.

OUR BURNING PLANET

Fuel most Foul: The Purgatory Times for Sasol and other oil majors

By Kevin Bloom

A medium popcorn & soft drink combo is the nutritional equivalent of three quarter-pounders and 12 pieces of butter.