Tony Gupta and Salim Essa were at meeting in Brown's home

22 November 2017 - 13:47 By Bianca Capazorio
Former Eskom board chair Zola Tsotsi at Eskom inquiry in Parliament.
Former Eskom board chair Zola Tsotsi at Eskom inquiry in Parliament.
Image: Esa Alexander

Former Eskom board chair Zola Tsotsi says he was called to a meeting at Minister Lynne Brown's home where Tony Gupta and Salim Essa were present.

Testifying in Parliament's Eskom inquiry‚ Tsotsi said he couldn't remember the exact date of the meeting but it was shortly after the Eskom board had been reconstituted.

He said they were to discuss board allocations‚ which Essa‚ the “Gupta lieutenant”‚ had become involved in.

“It seemed to me that I was not able to complete this exercise without the involvement of Mr Essa.

“I got a list (from him)‚ and I changed the list on the basis of what I thought it should be and I sent it to the minister. She sent it back and it hadn't changed from when I got it‚” he said.

Tsotsi detailed how Gupta would use the threat of going to “uBaba” when he was not able to help him with certain requests made.

“He turned around and said that he must report me to uBaba because I am working with uBaba's enemies‚” he said.

He added that he got the “impression he was very close to uBaba”.

Tsotsi said he could think of three occasions where Gupta had made requests but said he could not assist. One of these was a request to help secure contracts for gas in the Western Cape.

When the contract was awarded to another company‚ Tsotsi said Gupta had told him they were “uBaba's enemies”.

Tsotsi said there was “an element of intimidation” in the way Gupta dealt with him.

Questioned by the DA's Natasha Mazzone whether he believed that Brown was “a captured minister” he responded saying that he did not know if she was captured but that “there is a clear collusion or a clear association between Minister Brown and the Gupta family.”