IN QUOTES | Joburg mayor Geoff Makhubo denies influencing awarding of tenders

18 May 2021 - 08:35 By Cebelihle Bhengu
'No-one bought influence from me,' Joburg mayor Geoff Makhubo told the state capture inquiry on Monday. File photo.
'No-one bought influence from me,' Joburg mayor Geoff Makhubo told the state capture inquiry on Monday. File photo.
Image: Veli Nhlapo

Johannesburg mayor Geoff Makhubo denied having an influence in the awarding of tenders during his testimony before the state capture commission of inquiry on Monday.

Makhubo testified about money flows and tenders awarded between 2008 and 2018 during his tenure as ANC Johannesburg regional treasurer. IT company EOH is alleged to have donated millions to the city in exchange for tenders.

Makhubo denied this, saying donations did not guarantee tenders and the city's dealings with donors were transparent. Asked by evidence leader Matthew Chaskalson whether the public was made aware of the donors, the mayor said the city disclosed this information to the ANC structures during meetings.

He was also quizzed about his business partner Patrick Makhubedu sending him e-mails about pending tenders relating to EOH in the city. 

Here are six telling quotes from his testimony: 

Donations were transparent

“We go to the private sector to ask for business so we can self sustain. We send proposals and they are transparent, so it should be appropriate ... This was a private matter between the government and the organisation until now that we must disclose donations above R100,000. Previously, whoever donated was kept a secret.”

Donating does not guarantee business with the city 

“Whether you win the tender does not depend on whether you fund the ANC or not. There are lots of businesses having transactions and businesses in the city, but if they don't fund the ANC, that doesn't work against them.”

Not privy to relationship between the city and suppliers 

“I don't know about bidders in the city because I am hardly involved in exchanges between the city and suppliers and service providers. What is strange, is for me to have received a letter like this.” 

Communicating with service providers 

“If service providers feel aggrieved and they want to escalate to political leadership, it's not about awarding of jobs. Those things do happen because the alternative for this is going to court. It happens all the time.”

No influence on tenders 

“I don't know of any Geoff who will have an influence on tenders. The only Geoff I know is myself and I had no influence on tenders.” 

Nothing wrong with a business partner sending an e-mail about pending tenders 

“Patrick is my friend and business partner in two companies. I don't find it strange that he would have asked me a question about something ... This thing has no relationship with the questions you're asking about the city ... I think you're making links on things that do not link.”