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#StateCapture report reveals Free State was #Guptas' playground

───   TSHEHLA KOTELI 08:10 Fri, 24 Jun 2022

#StateCapture report reveals Free State was #Guptas' playground | News Article
PHOTO: Reuters.

The state prosecutor, Jacyntha Witbooi, has previously stated in open court that the Free State has often been looted by the Guptas, and the recent State Capture report has proven the statement to be true.

The reports compiled by Chief Justice Raymond Zondo has shown that the former provincial official, Mosebenzi Zwane, has allegedly been one of the central figures in two failed projects in the province. 

It was at first when he was the MEC of Human Settlements when the R1 billion housing project failed, and secondly when he was the MEC of Agriculture, which is when millions of rands of taxpayers’ money landed in the Guptas' hands.

ALSO READ: Free State 'often looted by Guptas'

Part 4 of the Zondo report stipulates it was on 25 March 2010 when Zwane, as the MEC of Human Settlements, announced during his budget vote speech that the provincial government has allocated R1.3 billion for the construction of housing units towards addressing the then 200 000 housing backlog. 

When the National Department of Human Settlements noticed that the provincial Department of Human Settlements have underspent the funding allocated to it, some of the housing budgets were threatened to be transferred to better performing provinces. 

ALSO READ: #StateCapture: Millions of rands of taxpayers’ money put at great risk

In an attempt to not lose the funds, a scheme was quickly inverted with the purpose to spend some of the money, after which R481 466 806 was spent by giving 106 contractors advance payments before any work was done. These payments were done without any written agreement or any proof that houses had been built.

In the final part of the State Capture report, , which is in Part 5, Zwane, as the MEC of Agriculture, is blamed for not doing due diligence when the Estina company was appointed for the Vrede Dairy Farm project. 

The report has proven that more than R250 million from the government was milked by the Gupta family and their associates. 

The money was paid with gross negligence without asking questions or looking at how the money was spent by the appointed company.

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