Ex-Bosasa boss turned whistleblower Angelo Agrizzi is not going to let his arrest this week stop him from continuing his testimony before the state capture commission of inquiry.
According to his lawyer, Daniel Witz of Witz Attorneys, Agrizzi wants to finish what he started, despite being hauled before the Specialised Commercial Crimes Court in Pretoria this week on charges of money laundering and fraud.
Agrizzi, together with former Bosasa chief financial officer Andries van Tonder, former Bosasa senior staffer Frans Vorster, current Bosasa employee Carlos Bonifacio and former correctional services top brass Patrick Gillingham and Linda Mti were also arrested and charged.
The charges, which include numerous counts of violating the Public Finance Management Act and contravening the Prevention and Combating of Corrupt Activities Act, stem from a decade-old Special Investigating Unit report handed over to the NPA in 2009, which found an improper and corrupt relationship existed between Bosasa, Gillingham and Mti.
In exchange for cash, cars, homes, flights and holidays – among other gifts – Gillingham and Mti colluded with Bosasa executives to ensure the company was awarded four lucrative Department of Correctional Services tenders worth roughly R2bn between 2004 and 2005.
Last week, the regional head of the National Prosecuting Authority’s serious commercial crimes unit, Marshall Mokgatle, approved the charges lead prosecutor Peter Serunye had drawn up.
Mti handed himself over on Thursday and, together with his co-accused, was released on R20 000 bail. They are scheduled to appear in court again on March 27, 2019.
Witz told News24 on Friday morning that reports that Agrizzi was reconsidering co-operating further with the Zondo-led commission were “completely wrong”.
“We have just spoken to Angelo now. His view is that he started this thing, and he wants to finish it,” said Witz.
“He [Agrizzi] is happy to go back to the commission and open himself up for cross-examination and for further testimony, however, he just wants a short period of time to confirm his right in terms of the Constitution, that he has in terms of the criminal trial against him, a fair trial in terms of the Constitution.
“There is no intention of not going back,” added Witz.
Agrizzi’s marathon nine-day testimony revealed extensive allegations of corruption involving several government ministers – including Nomvula Mokonyane and Gwede Mantashe – as well as ANC MPs, journalists, union officials, and how Bosasa colluded with senior officials over more than a decade to cook tender documents and score lucrative contracts with the state.
Vorster and Van Tonder have also appeared before the commission, delivering equally damning testimony against high-ranking Bosasa executives and government officials.