Gupta 'hand' in Molefe case

State capture: Former Eskom executive tells MPs Ajay would arrange to have matter heard after ANC conference

09 November 2017 - 07:12 By Bianca Capazorio
Brian Molefe. File photo.
Brian Molefe. File photo.
Image: RAYMOMD PRESTON Sunday Times.

A suspended Eskom executive has alleged in parliament that the Guptas, with the help of a deputy minister and President Jacob Zuma's son Duduzane Zuma, conspired to delay court proceedings against former Eskom CEO Brian Molefe until after the ANC elective conference.

The bombshell was dropped by Suzanne Daniels, the suspended head of legal compliance at Eskom, who was testifying before a parliamentary committee probing the alleged capture of the power utility.

Daniels told the public enterprises committee that Ajay Gupta and Deputy Public Enterprises Minister Ben Martins told a meeting about moves to talk to "someone" in the office of Gauteng deputy judge president Aubrey Ledwaba to delay the case against Molefe.

The meeting took place on July 29 when Daniels, who was suspended last month, was invited for coffee by Gupta associate Salim Essa. Daniels met Essa at Melrose Arch before walking to a nearby townhouse where Ajay Gupta, Martins, Duduzane and an unknown Chinese woman were sitting in the lounge.

She said it was clear the meeting was not formal as Gupta was wearing grey tracksuit pants and no shoes.

"I was praying to God they would not kill me. I thought I had walked into a trap."

She said they had been discussing the court processes against Molefe when Gupta asked her where the matter stood.

Daniels said she told him a meeting with Ledwaba's office was scheduled to discuss when the matter would be set down as the EFF, DA and Solidarity had joined the case.

Daniels said that it was at that point that Gupta spoke of how he would approach someone in the office of the deputy judge president to delay the case until after December.

This has been seen as the Guptas' attempt to keep the case from the public domain ahead of the ANC elective conference next month.

"He said he would have to talk to someone in the DJP's office to make sure the meeting only takes place after December 2017. He mentioned something about Dr Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma but I didn't follow, partly because I just couldn't believe where I was and what I was hearing."

Daniels said she left soon afterwards, drove home, poured a stiff whisky and went to bed.

She said she then instructed the legal team to make "damn sure we get the matter heard before December 2017".

It is set down for November 29.

"After that day, I am very convinced state capture is real," she told the committee.

Daniels also told the committee about a 2015 meeting with Essa at which he told her about the pending suspensions of then Eskom CEO Tshediso Matona and finance director Tsholofelo Molefe and two others. They were suspended two days later.

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