Evidence presented at the Zondo Commission has shown how EOH paid millions to high-profile ANC politicians in donations and made irregular payments in exchange for lucrative tenders.
EOH CEO Stephen Van Coller said their investigation into corruption uncovered both undisguised and disguised donations.
“The undisguised donations…the issue is the size and the fact that it is to a single political party – the ANC,” he said.
The EOH CEO further revealed that the potential irregular payments at EOH stand at approximately R865 million.
The company has uncovered around R700 million of payments where there was no work done and which were not related to any contracts.
Steven Powell, managing director of ENSafrica’s forensics department, which led the investigation, provided further details about these irregular payments and donations to the ANC.
Powell told the Zondo Commission that Johannesburg Mayor Geoff Makhubo requested over R6 million in payments to ANC accounts from EOH’s former business development executive, Patrick Makhubedu.
According to Powell, numerous payments to ANC bank accounts helped to fund ANC accommodation costs, employee stipends, transportation, and merchandise at ANC events.
Another top official implicated in dubious payments is ANC heavyweight and state security deputy minister Zizi Kodwa.
Powel said Kodwa received eight payments totalling R375,000 from former EOH Mthombo executive director Jehan Mackay.
He provided the commission with a table which reflects the payments that were reported as potentially suspicious.
People listed in the table include Kodwa, former President Jacob Zuma advisor Siybulela Sintwa, and ANC Youth League treasurer Reggie Nkabinde.
Johannesburg Mayor Geoff Makhubo
A lot of Powell’s testimony focussed on the relationship between EOH and City of Joburg Mayor Geoff Makhubo.
He said suspicious payments were made to Mfundi Mobile, which is linked to Molelwane Consulting, a company owned by Makhubo and his wife Florence.
In February 2016, Mfundi Mobile paid Molelwane Consulting R200,000, which was followed by another R50,000 payment in April.
In May 2016, Makhubo requested a R50-million donation from the EOH. In the same month, Makhubo sent two ANC invoices to EOH for expenses worth R503,000.
In June 2016, the City of Johannesburg awarded a SAP upgrade tender to EOH worth R404 million.
In the same month, Mfundi Mobile paid ANC’s office rent for R410,000 and printing costs for R40,000.
EOH also donated R204,000 in laptops to the ANC and sponsored a R512,000 New York trip for City of Joburg learners of a programme linked to the mayor’s wife.
In July, EOH paid Mfundi Mobile R16 million for purported work done. Powell described this as a disguised ANC donation.
Makhubo also emailed EOH’s Makhubedu multiple ANC supplier invoices.
Powel said this is a textbook case of quid pro quo. “What we have seen is a pattern of regular solicitation of donations coupled with the awards of tenders.”
“It is as if the tenders are being granted in exchange for the financial benefit of the party,” he said.