Former Group Chief Executive Officer (GCEO) Lucky Montana appeared before the Commission of Inquiry into Allegations of State Capture. Picture: Itumeleng English/African News Agency (ANA)
Former Group Chief Executive Officer (GCEO) Lucky Montana appeared before the Commission of Inquiry into Allegations of State Capture. Picture: Itumeleng English/African News Agency (ANA)

Lucky Montana says accuser is 'confusing all issues into one'

By Kailene Pillay Time of article published Apr 22, 2021

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Johannesburg - Former Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (Prasa) group CEO Lucky Montana has accused former head of legal Martha Ngoye, of "clutching at straws" to pin him to irregular contracts and maladministration at the parastatal.

Ngoye and general manager of Group Legal Services, Fani Dingiswayo, have previously claimed they attempted to prevent irregularities, maladministration and alleged corruption under Montana’s watch but this led him to fire them in 2015.

Montana returned to the Commission of Inquiry into State Capture on Wednesday.

He tore apart Ngoye's affidavit claiming she was "confusing all the issues into one".

"I am not saying that everything she (Ngoye) is saying is wrong, but she is trying to implicate me in things that are not there," Montana said.

Montana said Ngoye wanted to be seen as a corruption-buster, but she allowed major companies to take advantage of Prasa. He said Ngoye failed to defend Prasa when outdoor advertising giants Primedia and Continental were making R300 million revenue from the rail agency's stations, while the parastatal was only making R70 million.

"So, the owner of the asset made R70 million, while a private company, who are not even invested in that asset, other than to put up a board, they made almost R300 million," Montana said.

Earlier in the day, the commission heard Eskom-related evidence from an expert witness from Quintessence Digital Forensics, Cecil Louwrens.

Louwrens told the commission that forensic analysis into Eskom suspension letters showed the creator of the documents as company secretary Suzanne Daniels.

However, Louwrens said that he could not decipher whether Daniels actually wrote the letters, but the documents showed that she was listed as the creator.

He told Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo that he found the suspension letters were created with a Macintosh but this was inconsistent with Daniels’ computer, which was a windows operating system.

Last year, Daniels testified at the commission and told Zondo that she was following former Eskom board chairperson Ben Ngubane's instructions.

Her questioning, last year, focused on two aspects, the details leading to the suspension of four Eskom executives in 2015 and a letter of recommendation to Eskom's board that it should terminate its relationship with three media houses over their coverage of Eskom matters.

Daniels started as company secretary working with Ngubane in April 2015.

In September last year, she was questioned about her knowledge on who a suspicious email address, titled "inforportal1 businessman", belonged to.

Through the commission's investigations, it was determined the email account was linked to Gupta associate Salim Essa.

Daniels said she was unaware that the email address belonged to Essa and that Ngubane told her it belonged to then public enterprises' director-general Richard Seleke.

Essa has long been alleged to have written the suspension letters himself.

Louwrens told the commission that the creation date of the document was March 10, 2015.

Louwrens said it was possible to change the creator.

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Political Bureau

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