Threats and dodgy money deals - more allegations on state capture

06 February 2019 - 07:46 By Odwa Mjo
Deputy chief justice Raymond Zondo heard testimony by Gregory Lawrence and Adriaan Basson at the Zondo commission on February 5, 2019.
Deputy chief justice Raymond Zondo heard testimony by Gregory Lawrence and Adriaan Basson at the Zondo commission on February 5, 2019.
Image: ALON SKUY

The inquiry into state capture kicked off this week with Gregory Lawrence and News 24 editor-in-chief Adriaan Basson giving more shocking testimonies as the Zondo commission continued.

Adriaan Basson

The News24 editor-in-chief was the first to give testimony on Tuesday, February 5. He detailed how he had allegedly received threatening phone calls from people claiming to be Bosasa employees after he published a series of stories on the company in 2009. 

While working at the Mail & Guardian, Basson said there was a period where he  received anonymous calls. He told the commission that some of the calls included profanity and even accused him of racism. 

Gregory Lawrence

Lawrence was involved in the export of food and alcohol to countries in the Southern African Development Community (SADC). He detailed how he got into business with Equal Trade's Gregg Lacon-Allin in 2004.

He alleged that almost 60% of their transactions with SADC traders were in cash. Lawrence alleged that in 2012 Lacon-Allin told him that instead of depositing the cash, it would be given to Bosasa at their offices in the west of Johannesburg. 

According to Lawrence, it was agreed that Bosasa would pay him back via electronic funds transfer (EFT). Lawrence also alleged that the company paid Lacon-Allin a commission on the cash. 

Lawrence took two videos on his cellphone in which boxes with bundles of cash were seen being handed over to a Bosasa staff member at the company’s premises.

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