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#StateCaptureInquiry Angelo Agrizzi resumes testifying today @StateCaptureCom. If want some of the key points from yesterday’s hearings @ShahanR and I discuss them on #eNCA403 here.
#StateCaptureInquiry Proceedings resume. Chairperson Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo greets legal team head Advocate Paul Pretorius. Pretorius says that a video recording will be played, and Zondo has an unsigned copy of the transcription of what is audible.
#StateCaptureInquiry Zondo says before the video is played, there are a few questions he will put to Agrizzi. He returns to the question on amounts paid by Bosasa, and Agrizzi's statement on R4-million to R6-million monthly on cash payments. Zondo asks if gifts were regular.
#StateCaptureInquiry Former Bosasa COO Angelo Agrizzi tells Zondo that travel arrangements, car rentals and other gifts were not necessarily monthly but they were quite regular. The amounts cited were as at Agrizzi's time of leaving Bosasa.
#StateCaptureInquiry Pretorius says there are a number of issues of clarification arising from Agrizzi's testimony that will require attention.
#StateCaptureInquiry Agrizzi now deals with contracts worth about R160-million per annum awarded to Dyambeu, the precursor to Bosasa. Agrizzi says the Acsa contract was "in the region of about R14-million per month" and the @PostofficeSa contract was worth "about R180-million" PA
#StateCaptureInquiry Zondo asks if Acsa's contract was for more than security services, to which Agrizzi replies it was security services, guarding the multi-storey car park. Pretorius wants to place the video in its context, Agrizzi did not record it, but asked someone to do so.
#StateCaptureInquiry Pretorius confirms the video depicts a vault Agrizzi knows well, he recognises people, identify the voices of those in the video, activities depicted were commonplace and Agrizzi is aware of them, he can assist in describing what's in the video in detail.
#StateCaptureInquiry We are shown a screen shot and told this is the vault in the company secretary's office. The writing on the safe "was to do with legal privilege because we concerned we would be raided" and it contained documents and cash.
#StateCaptureInquiry Zondo asks if the documents were placed in the safe to justify the claim to privilege or were they there because it's where they legitimately should be. Agrizzi says he put on the sticker asserting only lawyers @HoganLovells should be notified of its opening.
@HoganLovells #StateCaptureInquiry Agrizzi describes the segment of the clip played so far and says it depicts Andries van Tonder, the CFO of Bosasa, allegedly taking a box out of a safe in the vault. We see empty shelves in the vault and a hand grabbing a box in a safe.
@HoganLovells #StateCaptureInquiry Further into the video, some of the shelves have files on them, and we hear background noise of scuffling. A woman then appears opening a door. Pretorius asks how he knows the person whose arm is shown is Van Tonder, Agrizzi replies he told him him to do so.
@HoganLovells #StateCaptureInquiry "It was quite a heavy box chair and he is having to carry it by himself [...] the cell phone is in his top left hand pocket," says Agrizzi. Pretorius returns to the dark-haired woman shown at 00'48'' and Agrizzi says it is company secretary Natasha Olivier.
@HoganLovells #StateCaptureInquiry The male person, Van Tonder, said to be filming the video proceeds through a corridor and greets a passerby. The woman who greets him is from the IT department at Bosasa, says Agrizzi. The person filming now moves outside into a courtyard.
@HoganLovells #StateCaptureInquiry Agrizzi is now detailing the layout of the Bosasa premises where the vault with the safe is from which Van Tonder retrieved a box (a risk for the company) and says the "box is being transported from the company secretary's vault to Gavin Watson's vault"
@HoganLovells #StateCaptureInquiry There are two doors the person walking needs to go through to reach Watson's office. The video resumes, Watson briefly appears seated for seconds as the camera pans. Pretorius asks of a sign seen at 01'46'' in the video. It is a vault door, says Agrizzi.
@HoganLovells #StateCaptureInquiry Pretorius points out an olive green object, Agrizzi says it is a drop safe and "next to the photostat paper [...] those are the security bags" which are used "to pack cash to pay people with bribes"
#StateCaptureInquiry "No, Chair, they were only used for bribes," says Agrizzi in reply to Zondo's question on security bags. For a moment we see a man seated, whom Pretorius asks Agrizzi to identify. "The gentleman is Mr Gavin Watson [...] behind him is his safe," says Agrizzi.
[HAPPENING NOW] #StateCaptureInquiry A video is showing now depicting a person with a box said to contain cash, who proceeds from one vault in an office to another vault in an office in which Bosasa CEO Watson can be seen seated with another man.
#StateCaptureInquiry Agrizzi identifies the second man as Johannes Gumede, says Agrizzi, adding that behind Gumede are very confidential files. This is all inside a vault said to be in Watson's office at Bosasa.
#StateCaptureInquiry Pretorius refers Agrizzi back to the segment of the clip in which Watson is seen seated at a table, Pretorius says there are some items on the table. It's understood those items include cash.
#StateCaptureInquiry Pretorius asks for a five minute adjournment to ensure that technical matters can be attended to; we are about two minutes into a six minute video seemingly recorded by the CFO of Bosasa at the company's premises.
#StateCaptureInquiry Yep, it's a stash of cash. Several people are trying to assist in pausing the video at the exact moment it is visible beside Watson. Seems likely this technical matter will demand more than five minutes to address.
#StateCaptureInquiry Zondo returns and proceedings resume. Pretorius thanks Zondo for the break. At 01'51'' we see a table with some items on it including a bag with stacks of money, paper, a pen and a highlighter. Agrizzi says this is Watson's desk.
#StateCaptureInquiry Pretorius says it would be difficult to conclude on the footage alone that the money is in R100 notes, Zondo notes the colour, and Agrizzi says that they would get the money in R100 and R200 notes. Zondo notes the bag is transparent, unlike the security bags.
#StateCaptureInquiry There are some inaudible - at least to me - murmurs, we see the back of Gumede's head, another man standing and talking on the phone in the vault where Gumede and Watson are seated. Agrizzi highlights a different frame in which the stack of money is clearer.
#StateCaptureInquiry Agrizzi identifies the third person, standing and talking on cell phone in the vault, as Papa Leshabane. Pretorius asks more about Leshabane's identity, what is in his left hand, Agrizzi says "those are two full bags of cash"
#StateCaptureInquiry "Chair, I can confirm that," says Agrizzi of grey security bags used only for cash in his 19 years. Zondo says it's therefore "highly unlikely" those Leshabane is holding contained anything but cash; Agrizzi says they were bought with a very specific purpose.
#StateCaptureInquiry Agrizzi identifies a black book on a surface beside a green safe in the video, and says this is one of Agrizzi's black books, says "they are very distinctive" and this one appears at 02'04'' in the video being shown at the inquiry.
#StateCaptureInquiry In a flash, Agrizzi can estimate the value of piles of cash. He looks at the cash in a specific frame and with the blink of an eye declares the notes together equal R100,000. He says it was his job to determine the amounts.
#StateCaptureInquiry Agrizzi tells Zondo there were four people in the room (or, more accurately, the vault) and listed here by me in alphabetical order:
Van Tonder
#StateCaptureInquiry Zondo asks Agrizzi if Agrizzi is sure all those in the room know exactly what the money is for, can Agrizzi say that absolutely positively and Agrizzi says he is willing to say so, and he is willing to bet the value of the money in that room on that fact.
#StateCaptureInquiry Agrizzi says Gumede can be heard in the video asking for an additional R10,000. Zondo later asks about the men's attire in the video, which Agrizzi says is the Bosasa uniform, they wore blue shirts and he can wear his tomorrow if Zondo wants him to do so.
#StateCaptureInquiry Pretorius asks about taking an adjournment now. He says the scenes that come later may require more attention. Stunning stuff, this. Zondo says we will resume at 11:30.
#StateCaptureInquiry The hearing has resumed and Agrizzi has flagged the presence of a former employee he says he saw at the @StateCaptureCom hearings yesterday in plainclothes and allegedly slipping into the hearings on an old police card. Zondo asks that this be investigated.
#StateCaptureInquiry Agrizzi thanks Zondo for the commitment to follow up on the issue the witness has flagged, which speaks to concerns over security. We return to the video at 02'16'' where Gumede's arm and Leshabane on the phone are depicted.
#StateCaptureInquiry Agrizzi says the grey security bags were only used with cash, and staff at Bosasa also received cash in grey security bags.
#StateCaptureInquiry "What I'm trying to say is that I was not 100% correct in saying grey bags were only used for bribes" for outsiders and inside Bosasa staff would sometimes receive hush money (also, as Zondo notes, bribes) of about R10,000 in cash.
#StateCaptureInquiry The use of the cash was predominantly for bribes, says Agrizzi, and the grey security bags were used to contain those bribes which were paid to people internal and external to Bosasa.
#StateCaptureInquiry Agrizzi: We paid a 15% premium on the cash because the cash was laundered. I should have said bribes (not bonuses) because we are bribing the people to keep quiet about the corruption.
#StateCaptureInquiry "These are not courier bags," says Agrizzi. Zondo says Agrizzi has spoken about the grey bags since yesterday, earlier on Agrizzi said in his 19 years at Bosasa those bags were never used for anything other than bribe money. "Correct [...] I stand by that."
#StateCaptureInquiry Agrizzi seems to me calmer and unhurried today compared to yesterday. He clarifies that the grey security bags were predominantly used for bribes to people outside of Bosasa, but also for hush money bribes to Bosasa personnel.
#StateCaptureInquiry Pretorius refers to the transcript of Gumede's speech in this segment of the video with the number 10,000 and him saying - according to Agrizzi's expansion - he needs R10,000 to buy two remotes with panic buttons for Acsa so they can alert the control room.
#StateCaptureInquiry Agrizzi: It doesn't make sense because we have an internal, fully fledged department so I don't understand why they would buy two remotes, it doesn't make sense to me at all.
Zondo: Could it be a code language for something
Agrizzi: Could very well be.
#StateCaptureInquiry Agrizzi says you can by remotes and receivers for about R300 and with long life batteries they would cost "R700 maximum" and he says Gumede was Bosasa chairman at the time of this video, Gumede would normally pick up the phone to arrange something like this.
#StateCaptureInquiry Pretorius asks Agrizzi why if, as he says, all people in the vault are in on the deal, why would it be necessary to say things like this and - on Agrizzi's allegations pretend the R10,000 is for remotes. Agrizzi: I can't say. I am sorry I can't explain it.
#StateCaptureInquiry Now, in addition to custody of the #GuptaLeaks hard drive, the inquiry has a video of four Bosasa officials in what Agrizzi describes as Gavin Watson's vault with stacks of money. Agrizzi has also handed a black book with logs of bribes to the investigators.
#StateCaptureInquiry Some audible gasps from people at tables here @StateCaptureCom as video shows Watson lifting and placing on the table wads of cash, as he counts out the money. The stacks make a thudding noise as he "is making up the notes" in the vault.
#StateCaptureInquiry "It was a frequent mention by Mr Watson in the company. It was nothing. Cash was nothing," says Agrizzi on the term "monopoly money" he says Watson used to describe the bribe money.
#StateCaptureInquiry Agrizzi testifies that he once asked Watson why Watson called the bribe money "monopoly money" to which he claims Watson replied that (i.) they wanted the monopoly on business and (ii.) it was playing money. "You are playing with people," says Agrizzi.
#StateCaptureInquiry "That's a million rand," says Agrizzi referring to a wad or stack of bundled R100 rand notes beside a now standing Watson in a frame from a video captured in the vault at Bosasa, as Agrizzi has described during testimony today.
#StateCaptureInquiry Apologies for the low quality of this frame from the video Agrizzi is discussing @StateCaptureCom but you can see on the table a blue-ish stack which is what he's described as a million rand cash. A sight most of us will never see.
#StateCaptureInquiry Agrizzi describes the various places money was stored on site at the Bosasa premises and testifies the vault in the secretary's office was dubbed by one person the "oven" where the "bread" needed to "cool down".
#StateCaptureInquiry "It was a very dangerous process [...] someone would have to meet up near Lanseria, there's a petrol station near there [...] there was not time to count it at the side of the road, so it would be counted at the secretary's vault," says Agrizzi.
#StateCaptureInquiry Agrizzi says the cash money he's described as laundered and which Bosasa (on his allegation) got at a 15% premium would be handed over at a petrol garage near Lanseria. The cash came from suppliers in place such as Zimbabwe, he's said.
#StateCaptureInquiry Here, closer up, is the stack of cash Agrizzi declared was R1-million and you can see the CEO of what was Bosasa, Watson, in the background of the frame from the video evidence before @StateCaptureCom.
@StateCaptureCom #StateCaptureInquiry The video continues for a bit, showing Watson standing, some dialogue, then Pretorius announces that is the end of the video. Zondo asks about the frequency of operations like this.
@StateCaptureCom #StateCaptureInquiry Agrizzi says these operations would happen weekly, sometimes they would do bulk orders, and over Christmas they would increase. On a Monday the team would discuss, "What would be the order of chicken?" This seemingly a euphemism for the bribes to be processed
@StateCaptureCom #StateCaptureInquiry Question from Pretorius on what to Agrizzi's mind Watson's reference to Van Tonder's "stuff" means to which Agrizzi replies, money. Stuff means money, he says, and Agrizzi also got such money. He asks if he may elaborate.
@StateCaptureCom #StateCaptureInquiry Agrizzi says the money kind of buys loyalty, you feel important, you're caught up in a cult, you are complicit. He adds, "It's a trap, bribery is a track, because you raise your standard of living."
@StateCaptureCom #StateCaptureInquiry Agrizzi adds, "You don't entrap them for life if you pay them once off [...] but once you start paying people bribes on a monthly basis for as long as they are there, you control them 100%."
#StateCaptureInquiry I spoke about this tactic on #eNCA403 yesterday: the idea that Bosasa - on Agrizzi's allegation - would make monthly bribe payments and grocery deliveries to colludes, to a point where it's a kind of illegal bank, or fraudulent bribe salary.
#StateCaptureInquiry You can see why this reported strategy WRT bribes to officials as reported by Agrizzi would be so effective; it encroaches on bribe recipient's standards of living, to a point where they're trapped by their own monthly spending, less likely to "snitch" too.
#StateCaptureInquiry Agrizzi: Every single contract was tainted with bribes and corruption.
Zondo: You think most contracts, extensions were influenced by corruption.
Agrizzi: Correct.
#StateCaptureInquiry Pretorius asks Agrizzi if Patrick Gillingham received bribes, and Agrizzi testifies Gillingham did and Agrizzi paid some of them. There is dialogue in the video between Watson and Van Tonder on paying a person named Patrick monthly.
#StateCaptureInquiry See below @CowansView's article from last year with detail on Patrick Gillingham of correctional services, the bribes he's said to have received from Bosasa. Agrizzi says he handled Gillingham and "helped Gillingham with his divorce."…
#StateCaptureInquiry Agrizzi says the Patrick referred to in the video played today @StateCaptureCom is Gillingham. He's described being Gillingham's handler. Agrizzi says he seldom paid cash to recipients, but sometimes when the "mule" wasn't available he would pay the bribes.
#StateCaptureInquiry Agrizzi replies to Pretorius that the video is from 2017 and he is sure the investigators @StateCaptureCom will be able to give a more precise date based on their verification of the media.
#StateCaptureInquiry Zondo asks what motivated the recording of this video, and Agrizzi says it will take some time to explain but he will. Agrizzi says people would be disposed of at Bosasa if they knew too much and he knows because he sometimes did the disposing.
#StateCaptureInquiry Agrizzi describes a culture of fear, intimidation, scapegoating those who left Bosasa, which is what he says informed the decision to arrange for the filming of this video.
#StateCaptureInquiry "Had I come to the commission, Chair, without solid evidence it would all have been pinned on me." He continues saying he wanted to show Zondo and the country "how easily people fall into this trap" and soon after Zondo adjourns for lunch.
[JUST IN] #StateCaptureInquiry Further concerns over security as Zondo returns and explains the delay in the resumption of proceedings over lunch. He says a "security situation" is behind the extended lunch break and measures must be taken to ensure the safety of witnesses.
A security breach at #StateCaptureInquiry @StateCaptureCom during the second day of testimony from self-defined-corruptor-turned-whistleblower Agrizzi prompted an extended lunch break. Earlier, he flagged another security concern regarding the presence on site of a former cop.
#StateCaptureInquiry @StateCaptureCom proceedings conclude for day two of 2019, following Zondo's statements on a "security situation" at the venue; this, during Agrizzi's testimony on money laundering, bribery and corruption he alleges occurred at Bosasa.
#StateCaptureInquiry Here's exactly what Zondo said: We were supposed to resume at two o'clock. We did not resume at two o'clock because there was a security situation in the building connected with the hearing that needed to be looked into.
#StateCapture Zondo: It has been looked into and it is necessary that measures be taken to ensure that those who come to this hearing are safe, and the relevant authorities need to be given a space to do that. We are going, therefore, to adjourn the proceedings for this afternoon
#StateCaptureInquiry eNCA understands the inquiry team is in a security meeting at the moment for a debrief. At lunchtime, a motorcade some with sirens sounding swiftly left the inquiry venue. It's clear whether or not Agrizzi was in one of the several vehicles at that time.
#StateCaptureInquiry This morning Agrizzi reported that yesterday he spotted Solomon Segale, who is a former police officer Agrizzi had employed, at the inquiry venue. Agrizzi says Segale arrived in plainclothes and entered the venue using his old (void) @SAPoliceService ID card
[JUST IN] A statement from the #StateCaptureInquiry @StateCaptureCom issued now reports Agrizzi will return to the stand as a witness tomorrow and the proceedings are set down from 10:00 on Friday, 18 January 2018.
#StateCaptureInquiry @StateCaptureCom The beginning of the full clip which Agrizzi says was filmed by Van Tonder in 2017, and which he has testified shows four Bosasa directors and laundered bribe money AKA monopoly money, bread or chicken orders for the week.
#StateCaptureInquiry @StateCaptureCom Part two from the the full clip which Agrizzi says was filmed by Bosasa CFO Van Tonder in 2017, and which he has testified shows four Bosasa directors and stacks, also bags of laundered bribe money.
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