Johannesburg – Former Deputy Minister of Finance Mcebisi Jonas plans to testify this morning to the State Inquiry Committee.
Jonas' testimony might be crucial to the investigation, as he had publicly announced that he would have been bribed by one of Gupta's brothers. The commission of inquiry into state prison, led by deputy chief prosecutor Raymond Zondo, investigates allegations of corruption, largely concentrated around the infamous Gupta family and former president Jacob Zuma.
It was claimed that the Gupta family used its relationship with Zuma to close business deals with state-owned companies. Billions were allegedly paid to the family in suspicious business deals involving government officials.
The first day of the research was spent sketching the job description, which will be led by the State of Capture report released in 2016 by former public protector Thuli Madonsela.
Jonas confirmed in 2016 news reports that he was offered the position of Minister of Finance, replacing Nhlanhlana Nene. He said that he was offered the position of Ajay Gupta in the presence of Duduzane Zuma and businessman Fana Hlongwane. He added that he was offered a gift of R 600,000 in cash and that he would later be paid R600 million for taking up the position. He refused the bribe.
Ajay Gupta, Duduzane and Hlongwane have denied the Jonas version of events. Jonas' testimony is expected to focus on what he has told the Public Protector and the statement he has submitted. He is the second witness to emerge.
On Tuesday, official of the Treasury Willie Mathebula took the position and outlined the procurement processes of the Treasury. Mathebula's testimony also focused on the abuse of purchasing processes. Mathebula said there were cases where some government entities used the derogation clause to bypass purchasing processes, allowing them to register in essence to whomever they wanted.