Agrizzi's DA ammunition against Ramaphosa

DA leader Mmusi Maimane and President Cyril Ramaphosa.
DA leader Mmusi Maimane and President Cyril Ramaphosa.
Image: Mike Hutchings/AFP/Getty Images)

DA leader Mmusi Maimane's brandishing of another document that laid bare Bosasa's funding of ANC activities has lifted the lid on where the opposition party is getting its information to ambush President Cyril Ramaphosa.

Sources in the embattled facilities management firm, Bosasa (now called African Global Group) told Sunday World that former chief operations officer Angelo Agrizzi used to brag about having close ties to senior DA leaders, including Glynnis Breytenbach, the former National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) prosecutor.

Sunday World has learnt that in one of the meetings in August last year at his house in Fourways, Agrizzi told some managers of the company that he has friends in the high echelons of the DA. A Bosasa insider who was at the meeting said Agrizzi told them he "had become close friends with high-ranking members of the DA. This is why Maimane always brandashes internal documents Agrizzi took from Bosasa".

On Thursday, Maimane tried to ambush Ramaphosa a second time with a letter from former ANC treasurer Zweli Mkhize, in which the ANC thanks Bosasa for a R3m donation in 2014. The president said this time around he wanted to reflect on the matter.

In November last year, the DA leader confronted Ramaphosa with a signed affidavit by former Bosasa auditor Peet Venter, which showed that his CR17 campaign had received a R500,000 donation from Bosasa boss Gavin Watson. Public protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane has since found the president misled parliament on the matter.

Ramaphosa has taken the matter on judicial review.

The source claimed Agrizzi's proximity to the DA leadership lends credence to claims that his testimony before the deputy chief justice Raymond Zondo commission may have been influenced by the opposition politicians around him.

In 2014, Agrizzi's son Giancarlo, formed a company, Indlala Group of Companies, with DA directors Luyolo Mphithi and Dikeledi Selowa. Mphithi is DA federal youth leader. Selowa, a former youth leader, is a DA councillor in Tshwane.

Breytenbach, DA shadow minister for justice and correctional services, confirmed this week that in 2017 she met whistleblower Agrizzi at the Sheraton Hotel in Pretoria, with former Bosasa chief financial officer Andries van Tonder and DA MP Anellie Lotriet.

"He [Agrizzi] requested a second meeting; he wanted to show me stuff on his desktop computer. I agreed to [go] to his house to view the material. I was accompanied by Werner Horn, MP," Breytenbach said.

"It is no secret that Mr Agrizzi gave me information. The information he gave me is the same as his evidence before the Zondo commission. It is a matter of public record. What I did with it is not something I'm prepared to discuss," she added, denying she gave the information to Maimane.

Breytenbach denied having close links to Agrizzi, though noting that before she left the NPA in 2014 she had been working on the Bosasa case.

On Friday, Maimane would not confirm or deny that he received information from Breytenbach, saying it would be unethical to reveal his sources.

"The heart of the matter is that the ANC and President Cyril Ramaphosa received funding from Bosasa, a company that Treasury sought to cancel government contracts with because they were ethically compromised," DA spokesperson Solly Malatsi said.

Agrizzi did not respond to requests for comment.