State capture: Nathi Mthethwa 'got R200k home upgrade' via crime intelligence account

18 September 2019 - 11:49 By AMIL UMRAW
Nathi Mthethwa. File photo.
Nathi Mthethwa. File photo.
Image: Trevor Samson

Sports, arts and culture minister Nathi Mthethwa allegedly received an almost R200,000 upgrade to his private KwaZulu-Natal residence in 2010 when he was police minister - and the money came from a crime intelligence secret service account.

This is according to seasoned Hawks investigator Kobus Roelofse during his second day of testimony at the state capture inquiry on Wednesday.

Roelofse's evidence focuses mostly on the looting of the secret service account which holds money used to pay informants, operate safe houses, purchase assets and cover the bills for covert operations. Most of his information was derived from an affidavit by an officer - who was put into witness protection - in 2011. Investigations were then conducted based on that information.

Roelofse claimed his investigations found that Mthethwa, crime intelligence boss Richard Mdluli and a police general all received upgrades to their private residences paid for through the account.

He said a risk assessment was done - although he had not seen the document - on Mthethwa's KwaMbonambi home in 2010 on Mdluli's instructions. Three payments were then made for security upgrades totalling R195,000. Roelofse said he was unsure whether Mthethwa knew at the time where the money came from.

Mdluli allegedly received "a comprehensive security upgrade" to his private residence in Boksburg to the value of R190,000. Police General Monoko Mpshe is also alleged to have received security upgrades to her home worth about R40,000.

Roelofse also testified that luxury vehicles were purchased for Mdluli and Mpshe with money from the secret service account.

"I was informed that vehicles, especially luxury vehicles, were used to influence senior management to pose no obstacles. These are methods employed to put people in a difficult, compromising situation," Roelofse said.

He found that between 2009 and 2011, five vehicles including three Mercedes Benzes, a BMW and a Lexus were purchased for Mdluli. The value of the cars was about R3.1m.

An Audi Q5, which cost about R550,000, was bought for Mpshe even though she already had two official vehicles and a driver.

Solomon Lazarus, who was a finance officer at crime intelligence, was found guilty of approving the funds for the vehicles in a disciplinary process. Roelofse said when Mpshe found out a disciplinary process was being brought against her, she resigned the next day.

His testimony is continuing.