State capture: Deputy minister Makwetla asks to testify on Bosasa upgrades at his home

13 February 2019 - 15:44 By AMIL UMRAW
Thabang Makwetla, the deputy minister of justice and correctional services.
Thabang Makwetla, the deputy minister of justice and correctional services.
Image: Gallo Images / Beeld / Lisa Hnatowicz

Deputy minister of justice and correctional services Thabang Makwetla has submitted a request to appear before the commission of inquiry into state capture. 

Makwetla said in a statement that evidence before the commission that he unduly received security upgrades to his home from controversial prison facilities company Bosasa was not new. 

"I wish to indicate that the evidence submitted before the commission that an electric fence and an alarm system were installed at my home by Bosasa is not new. I have previously responded to it," he said.

"It has always been my conviction to make a modest contribution towards efforts to arrest the threat of a backward slide in our national transformation project."

Global Technology Systems (previously Sondolo IT) regional technical coordinator Richard le Roux told the commission in January how he carried out upgrades to the homes of government officials on the instruction of Bosasa bosses Gavin Watson and Angelo Agrizzi.

Le Roux estimated that it cost Bosasa about R350,000 for the security upgrades at Makwetla's home. These included an electric fence, a CCTV system with off-site monitoring capabilities and an alarm system with beams.

In 2018, Makwetla rebuked allegations that he benefitted from Bosasa, saying he'd had a relationship with the Watson brothers since the "struggle days". He said his home was burgled in January 2016 and he could not find a company to install security upgrades over the festive season. When he told Watson about the burglary, he said the Bosasa boss sent a team to his home to install the upgrades.

Makwetla claimed Watson refused to issue him with an invoice, even though he had "pleaded" for one.