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State capture: Bosasa boss Gavin Watson seen on film with R1m 'bribe' cash

Footage of cash being counted in the Bosasa vault was shown at the state capture inquiry in Parktown on January 17 2019.
Footage of cash being counted in the Bosasa vault was shown at the state capture inquiry in Parktown on January 17 2019.
Image: MultimediaLIVE/Screenshot

Dramatic footage of cash being counted in the vault of Bosasa boss Gavin Watson was shown at the commission of inquiry investigating state capture on Thursday.

The commission saw damning evidence in a video submitted, and heard how Bosasa kept cash in vaults and delivered them in grey security bags to bribe officials for contracts.

Ex-Bosasa COO Angelo Agrizzi was testifying about a video he presented as part of his evidence which shows Bosasa employee Andries van Tonder taking money from one vault to another vault where company CEO Gavin Watson was.

The video in Watson’s vault showed piles of money stacked up and counted for bribes.

When asked by the head of investigations at the commission, advocate Paul Pretorius,  what the money was used for, Agrizzi said: "The use of cash from the safe was  predominantly for illegal activities."

Former chief operations officer for Bosasa Angelo Agrizzi took the stand for the second time at the state capture inquiry on Thursday January 17 2019, where he detailed how bribe money was moved, stored and paid out by Bosasa.

"In short, for bribes?" Pretorius asked, and Agrizzi agreed.

He said bribes were paid "internally and externally", adding that "we were bribing the people to keep quiet about the corruption".

Agrizzi said that in the 19 years he was at the company the money was "always used illegally".

"We used to pay premium to get the cash because the cash was laundered," he said when asked whether the money was used to pay staff legitimately.

The video shows Watson sitting at his desk with cash in his hand which Agrizzi said was about R1-million.

Agrizzi said that money used for bribes would be packed in either R100 or R200 notes.

Also present in the vault were Bosasa directors Johannes Gumede and Papa Leshabane.

The video showed Gumede saying he needed R10,000 to buy two remotes for panic buttons at the Airports Company of SA (Acsa).

Agrizzi said that (buying remotes for that sum) made no sense, but agreed that it could be code for something else.

Note: In a previous version of this article it was stated that R100,000 was shown in the video. It was in fact R1-million counted in 100,000 bundles. 

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