Vivien Natasen, the sole director and shareholder of consulting company Neo Solutions. Screengrab
Vivien Natasen, the sole director and shareholder of consulting company Neo Solutions. Screengrab

LIVE FEED: #StateCaptureInquiry August 29, 2019

By Zintle Mahlati Time of article published Aug 29, 2019

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Johannesburg - The Zondo commission will on Thursday morning hear evidence from a director at Neo Solutions Vivien Natasen. 

On Wednesday the commission wrapped up hearing evidence from former Free State MEC for economic development Mxolisi Dukwana. 

Dukwana accused former Free State premier Ace Magashule of corruption and labelled him as a “blesser” who sourced funds for his associates from a businessman who was awarded a multi-million rand asbestos contract by the Free State department of human settlements. 

Dukwana revealed in detail about what he described as the “asbestos heist”. 

The Free State department of human settlements had in 2014 awarded a controversial contract for the auditing of houses that were built with asbestos in the province. The contract was awarded to Diamond Hill, a company owned by businessman Ignatius Mpambani, and Blackhead Consulting, as a joint venture. 

The price tag for the cost of the project was set at R255 million for assessing 300 000 houses. Dukwana said there were several issues with the contract and that it’s awarding to the two companies was done without tender processes being followed. 

He also questioned the exorbitant money to be used to fund the contract as he believes the government could have conducted an audit of the asbestos houses without the need to hire a source. Dukwana said local councillors could have been used to draw this information. 


The former MEC provided emails which show how assistants to Magashule would communicate with Mpambani at various moments requesting funds to be paid to certain accounts. Dukwana insisted that this was done by Magashule’s staffers, Ipeleng Morake and Moroadi Cholota, on his behest. 

The commission even heard how a former acting judge Rifiloe Mokoena, now suspended SARS employee, wrote to Magashule seeking assistance with the payment of her daughter's college fees in the US. Magashule’s assistant forwarded the details to Mbampani and the fees were paid which amounted to about $4000, about R60 000. 

Dukwana went as far as describing and accusing Magashule as a "blesser" who used state funds for his benefit.  

“Mr Magashule was simply a blesser to many due to payments advanced by Mr Mpambani from monies corruptly and fraudulently sourced from the state coffers through the asbestos project at the behest of Mr Magashule,” said Dukwana. 


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