‘Leaders must be circumspect when interacting with business people’: 5 takeouts from Zizi Kodwa’s testimony

Deputy state security minister Zizi Kodwa said on Monday politicians need to reassess their relationships with business owners and manage how they are perceived by the public.

Deputy state security minister Zizi Kodwa was at the state capture inquiry on Monday. File photo.
Image: Masi Losi

The former ANC spokesperson was back at the state capture inquiry on Monday, where he was grilled about his relationship with businessman Jehan Mackay.

It was revealed on Monday that he received almost R2m in payments from Mackay, of which Kodwa claimed R1m was “a loan”.

Here are five revelations from his testimony:

Not in a position to repay R1m loan

Kodwa said he has not repaid the R1m loan but will do so as soon as he is financially stable.

“The understanding between Mr Mackay and I was that you’re my friend and you need assistance.  I will give you a loan on the understanding that when your finances stabilise, you will repay me.

“If I speak to him today, I will still assure him that as soon as I get a stable job I will repay the loan. The job I have today is a very political appointment. I can be removed tomorrow.”

Loan was a deal between friends 

Kodwa denied the loan and other payments from Mackay resulted in EOH receiving government contracts. He said the loan was a deal between two friends and he doesn’t consider himself as being in debt.

“These are the lessons of leaders who must be circumspect when interacting with people of business, to what extent this can be perceived as issues of a leader of the ANC binging on the extravagant.”

Loan was not an ANC donation

Kodwa denied the loan was a donation from TSS to the ANC. He said anyone who says otherwise would be misrepresenting the truth.

“I wouldn’t know the conversations he would have had with TSS but my conversation was very strictly with Mr Mackay. My understanding is the loan I have is with Mr Mackay.”

Why spend R890,000 on a car if you were broke?

Evidence leader Matthew Chaskalson told the inquiry Kodwa bought a car for R890,000 after receiving the payment from Mackay. He asked the former spokesperson whether he had a car in 2015 before receiving the payment.

Kodwa said: “Five years back is a long time but I should have had a car.”

He later admitted he should have bought a cheaper car.

“Perhaps I should have thought of [buying a] smaller [car] for R20,000, like a Corolla, instead of a bigger car,” he said.

Eastern Cape ANC blackmailed EOH to donate R1m

Chaskalson revealed the ANC in the Eastern Cape received a R1m donation from EOH while the company was bidding for a government tender. He asked why EOH treated a donation to the ANC as an expense relating to the tender for a SA Social Security Agency, EOH and Oracle contract.

Kodwa said he did not want to “mislead” the inquiry as he had no knowledge of this.

TimesLIVE (TMG Digital)

Cebelihle Bhengu

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