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Auditor details how Thoshan Panday 'captured' KZN police in 2010

Deputy chief justice Raymond Zondo at the state capture commission.
Deputy chief justice Raymond Zondo at the state capture commission.
Image: Alon Skuy

The Zondo commission of inquiry into state capture has heard how Durban businessman Thoshan Panday allegedly captured top police officials ahead of the 2010 World Cup.

This was detailed by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) auditor Trevor White, who testified at the commission on Tuesday.

White compiled a 400-page forensic report detailing how Panday benefited from R47m  worth of taxpayers’ money in contracts awarded to his companies for the tournament.

The commission heard that Panday allegedly bribed former KwaZulu-Natal police commissioner Lt-Gen Mmamonnye Ngobeni to quash a case involving the businessman.

White alleged that Panday did this by paying for the birthday party of Ngobeni’s husband, hosted at upmarket Umhlanga Rocks.

“I can conclude on the examination of the abovementioned documents that Panday paid the costs of Lt-Gen Ngobeni's husband’s birthday party that was held at the Royal Palm Hotel in Umhlanga Rocks on May 29 2010,” said White.

“The cost amounted to R20,962 and that includes the amount that was paid to the DJ. Panday also requested Mr Sign, who is the operator or manager of the restaurant, to inflate the invoice of this function to R29,712 and to further prepare the invoice in the favour of Mrs BM Ngobeni.

“I cannot determine on what basis Mr Panday would have requested Mr Sign to issue him with another invoice with an inflated amount. However, I can conclude that this gratification to Lt-Gen Ngobeni was done shortly before the deployments before the soccer World Cup."

A final order was issued to Panday’s company, GoldCoast Trading, to the amount of R26m, dated June 10 2010.

“In addition, Lt-Gen Ngobeni was aware from reports ... that there was an unusually high expenditure for detachment duties in the province and that SAPS' supply-chain management were not complying with ...   rules when making these appointments, which reports she received a day prior to her husband’s birthday party.

“She also appears to have been instrumental in attempts to stop this investigation,” added White.

According to White, several other top SAPS officials allegedly benefited from "gratifications" of various kinds from Panday. He claimed that one official was "gifted" with a 2002 Toyota Corolla valued at R60,000, while another had Varsity College fees amounting to R43,500 settled by Panday.