PIC director at centre of latest allegations
CAPE TOWN – The Public Investment Corporation (PIC) on Tuesday fell into another controversy after allegations emerged that non-executive director Sibusisiwe Zulu allegedly approved transactions worth about R6 billion for her live-in partner, Lawrence Mulaudzi.
Zulu – who is a niece of former ANC treasurer-general and Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs Minister Zweli Mkhize, and an acting judge in the KZN High Court – is said to have used the proceeds of this deal to start her lavish lifestyle, splurging on a multi-million-rand mansion in the coastal Umhlanga Ridge suburb and on luxury vehicles.
In email correspondence that Business Report has seen, Zulu asked that the allegations be probed by an independent investigation for verification. Zulu was not immediately available for comment, despite a numerous attempts to reach her via cellphone.
In one of the deals, as widely reported by various online media yesterday, Mulaudzi was allegedly paid R100 million for facilitation, of which R40m was allegedly paid to Zulu and Mkhize. Zulu is said to have used Mulaudzi to benefit from transactions that she approved in the committee she chaired.
She had the power to approve up to R2bn without the board’s consent.
“Through her scheme with the boyfriend, she has benefited more than R600m in shareholding and well over R100m in fees, which she uses to finance her lavish lifestyle,” reads the leaked email in part.
Sources claim that Zulu ran a kangaroo court alongside acting chief executive Matshepo More to get rid of all executives who served under Dr Dan Matjila in order to put their own candidates to continue with the looting while protecting the people who are seen to be aligned to them.
Deputy Finance Minister Mondli Gungubele has allegedly been trying to lobby Finance Minister Tito Mboweni to restructure the board and make Zulu the new deputy chairperson of the PIC board in order to complete their “takeover strategy”, according to the email.
Applications for funding are allegedly run through Mulaudzi, who then talks to both More and Gungubele to get the go-ahead.
Gungubele was not available for comment at the time of going to press.
“If you agree to their terms of sharing, 50 percent of the transactional fees and 40 percent shares in the proposed transaction which will be distributed to Mondli, More and Zulu through selected proxies, then your deal will be approved with no hassles,” one source said.
THE EMAIL ALLEGEDLY SENT BY ZULU:
Subject: Another PIC scandal
Dear Chairman and Colleagues,
I received a call from Ms Mokoka in relation to some task team work and in that conversation she asked me if I had seen the email below making allegations against me. I informed her that I hadn’t. I asked her to forward it to me and I thought I would also send it to all directors in case they were also omitted in an email from James Noku. (Please see below.)
I’ve assessed these allegations against me. While I can send a response to the board in relation to each allegation, I believe that these are of such a nature that they require an independent investigation so that they can be independently tested. I would be comfortable if the board deals with the matter in a manner similar to what I advocated for in the previous James Noku emails. Then we can avoid any challenge to the process followed by the board and you are not seen to have covered up for me.
I am more than willing to subject myself to any process that the board will decide on. It is not only in my interest but also that of the board that this matter be dealt with soonest.
I’ll wait to be guided by the board in this regard. Regards, SNZ