Mantashes fired worker for giving #StateCapture inquirer access to their farm
Johannesburg - ANC national chairperson and Mineral Resources Minister Gwede Mantashe and his wife, Nolwandle, fired one of their employees after she allowed an investigator attached to the state capture inquiry on to their Elliot, Eastern Cape, farm.
The Zondo Commission of Inquiry into State Capture on Tuesday heard that after they found out that their employee had allowed investigator Patrick Mlambo on to the property, they axed her.
Mlambo told the commission, chaired by Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo, he had pleaded with them not to fire the unnamed woman.
Mlambo said the former ANC secretary-general called him in February soon after he visited Mantashe’s farm and residence in Elliot and Cala, also in the Eastern Cape, to inspect security installations apparently installed by Bosasa to properties belonging to several high-profile leaders and members of the governing party.
Mlambo said he had earlier been called by Mantashe’s upset wife.
“Mrs Mantashe shouted at me for, among other things, visiting their residences without prior notice. Both the minister and Mrs Mantashe expressed in no uncertain terms their disappointment (at my) being invited into their Elliot home by their house supervisor,” reads Mlambo’s statement.
Mlambo said he informed Mrs Mantashe that he was just doing his job and had no bad intentions.
Mlambo said the Mantashes informed him on separate occasions over the phone that they had to summarily terminate the worker’s employment as a result of his visit.
The commission has previously heard that Bosasa installed a state-of-the-art CCTV and lighting systems at Mantashe’s Eastern Cape properties and another one in Ekurhuleni .
Former Global Technological Systems regional technical co-ordinator Richard le Roux confirmed he had travelled with Mlambo to show him the properties at which security installations had been made.
In the Eastern Cape, they visited the properties of former Correctional Services boss Linda Mti and Mantashe, as well as former SAA chairperson Dudu Myeni’s home in Richards Bay.
Mti’s two properties, in Greenbushes and Colchester, both in the Eastern Cape, also had security installations done.
When Mlambo called Myeni to tell her he was conducting investigations at her house, he said she accused him of being unprofessional.
Deputy Correctional Services Minister Thabang Makwetla received security installations worth R350000, while Environmental Affairs Minister Nomvula Mokonyane and ANC MP Vincent Smith also had installations done at their properties in Gauteng.
Mantashe said Mlambo broke into his Cala house and removed a wire used to lock it.
He accused the investigator of trespassing in the Cala residence, describing his actions as illegal and added that he duped the helper into believing he had permission to conduct his investigation at the Elliot farm.
According to Mantashe, the helper has not been fired but warned not to allow strangers into the property without first checking with her employers.