Former Bosasa chief operations officer Angelo Agrizzi. Picture: Karen Sandison/African News Agency(ANA)

Johannesburg - Former Bosasa COO Angelo Agrizzi has detailed how numerous threats were made against him and his decision to blow the whistle on the corruption at Bosasa. 

Agrizzi told the Zondo commission how he was tasked with meeting various former Bosasa employees who had planned to speak out about the corruption at the controversial facilities management company. 

He said he was asked by Brian Biebuyck to intervene and speak to the former employees. 

Agrizzi said he asked the former Bosasa employees to sign a separation agreement with Bosasa. Agrizzi said he had no choice but to try and convince them to sign the agreement as his own life was in danger. 

Agrizzi then revealed that he sought legal advice on how to handle the issue of threats against him and he consulted with DA MP Advocate Glynnis Breytenbach, Advocate Barry Roux and Willie Hofmyer. 

During this period, Agrizzi said he was approached by one of the former Bosasa employees who told him that his brother had died under suspicious circumstances. 

"During this period, I was approached by a family, some of who had previously worked for me at Bosasa, who had lost a brother under suspicious circumstances on the 29th July 2018. I was told that the deceased, who I do not know, had been coerced and paid by Bosasa whilst having been accommodated in a Krugersdorp guest lodge to manufacture statements about me," said Agrizzi. 

"The family provided me with the original statements that had been prepared by the deceased and invoices paid by Bosasa. I handed this over to the SAPS. The family told me that Bosasa paid for the immediate cremation of the deceased and provided proof of payment."

Agrizzi said on August 21, 2018, he received another threat and decided to tell his family that he would blow the whistle on the corruption at Bosasa. He drafted the statement and ignored calls from any individuals linked to Bosasa. 

He said relatives of Bosasa CEO Gavin Watson came to his house and requested that he sign an agreement with them to stop him from continuing with his plans to speak out against Bosasa. 

They also told him that Gavin Waston denied the allegations of corruption and that Watson made threats against his life. Agrizzi said he was offered a bribe to open up a business and that Bosasa would fund it, but he rejected this offer. 

In another meeting, Agrizzi decided to entertain the offer made by the Watsons whereby he decided he would peruse and make changes to the offer and send it to his lawyers. He said the offer included a payment of R5 million a year for his silence on Bosasa. 

"Valence Watson and his son Jarrod arrived at my house, requesting that I look at the offer in the presence of Andries van Tonder. I looked at the offer and suggested changes. The response from Valence Watson was that they would accept any changes I would make in the offer. So I made changes accordingly. I even sent it to my attorney to peruse. The Watsons sat in my office and debated and questioned what went wrong at Bosasa, now African Global Operations, and kept insisting that I sign the offer," said Agrizzi.  

The inquiry continues.

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