The Democratic Alliance (DA) have requested the Hawks to investigate charges relating to the Public Protector (PP) report released in December 2020 pertaining to the corrupt Gupta-linked Vrede Dairy Project.

Dr Roy Jankielsohn MPL, Leader of the Official Opposition in the Free State Legislature

Two issues require investigation and possible prosecution relating to the report. The first charge involves the indication by the PP that former Premier of the Free State and current Secretary General of the ANC, Mr Ace Magashule, allegedly committed perjury by giving false evidence under oath. The second charge relates to maladministration and improper conduct by Mr Magashule and former MEC’s Mosebenzi Zwane and Elsabe Rockman, as well as current MEC Mamiki Qabathe in terms of the Prevention of Organised Crime Act.

The DA is of the opinion that these senior ANC politicians must have been aware of the malfeasance committed by officials and individuals linked to the Gupta-linked company Estina. These politicians’ failure to act on serious allegations of mismanagement and corruption and their continued allocation of funds to the project in spite of being aware of the malfeasance through a National Treasury report, the media, as well as references to this in the Free State Legislature by members in the opposition make them guilty of aiding and abetting the corruption that took place there. In fact, after the contract with Estina and the Free State Department of Agriculture and Rural Development was cancelled and the fact that Estina never complied with their contractual responsibilities in terms of a R228 million investment in the R570 million project, the politicians approved an additional R106,2 million for payment paid to Estina.

The DA believes that the people of the Free State and the beneficiaries of the project deserve justice. Justice will only served when both the officials and politicians who are responsible for the malfeasance face the full might of the law.

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