The State Inquiry Investigation Committee heard from previous witnesses how companies linked to Gupta received significant success fees for concluding Transnet & # 39; s deal with China South Rail.
Former party chairman Brian Molefe at a press conference in Johannesburg on November 3, 2016. Photo: Reinart Toerien / EWN
PRETORIA – A former Transnet strategic manager described how old group head Brian Molefe unilaterally rejected his proposal to purchase a specific coal-collecting locomotive and instead opted for a Chinese manufacturer who was not fit for purpose.
Francis Callard testified on Friday at the State Commission for Research in Parktown.
The committee heard from previous witnesses how companies linked to Gupta received significant success fees for concluding Transnet & # 39; s deal with China South Rail.
Callard said he and his team argued in favor of buying Matsui's locomotives, which was already a Transnet supplier.
"We spoke with the reasons that standardization and compatibility with existing goods and services, given that we already had 110 and we just wanted to expand the current fleet," he said.
He said the China South Rail product was not suitable:
"It was not a 22-tonne-per-ass locomotive, it was not a heavy-duty locomotive, it was not designed for the coal line. It was specified for general freight. In short, it was not suitable for the coal line, so we can do not move in that direction. "
Callard said he was present at the meeting where the approved plan would be presented.
"I received a text message from Mr. Gama and said that Mr. Brian Molefe had withdrawn the memorandum and that I had to politely step out of that meeting," he said, referring to former CEO Siyabonga Gama.
China South Rail was eventually awarded the contract.