Zondo commission: Former spy boss to testify on Friday

Deputy Chief Justice Raymond 'Ray' Zondo greets the commission before hearing testimony from Trevor Manuel and Siphiwe Nyanda, 28 February 2019. Picture: Karen Sandison / African News Agency (ANA)

The state capture inquiry has heard testimony that the SSA initiated a probe into the Guptas when it was revealed that Fikile Mbalula knew about his inclusion in the Cabinet, allegedly by one of the Guptas.

The former Director-General (DG) of the State Security Agency (SSA), Jeff Maqetuka, is expected to take the witness stand on Friday at the commission of inquiry into state capture chaired by Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo.

The commission will hear law enforcement related testimony from the former DG, Ambassador Mzuvukile Maqetuka.

During Maqetuka’s tenure at the SSA, an investigation into the now infamous Guptas family. This was done in the interests of national security when it was revealed through media reports that Fikile Mbalula was informed he would be appointed to  Cabinet, allegedly by one of the Gupta brothers.

This was before he was officially told about it.

A domestic branch meeting then followed within the agency, where a report was received regarding the Gupta family.

Former domestic intelligence head Gibson Njenje previously told the commission that the then minister of state security, Siyabonga Cwele, was informed by someone in his team about the probe. This lead to himself, Mo Shaik (who was at the time the head of foreign intelligence) and Maqetuka being summoned by the former minister where the latter allegedly said the agency would, in effect, be investigating former president Jacob Zuma if it continued with a probe into the activities of the controversial Gupta family.

Testifying at the commission, Shaik described the said meeting as being “confrontational”.

Shaik previously told the commission that he resigned from the agency in February 2012, in part, due to the breakdown of his relationship with Cwele.

The proceedings on Friday get underway at 10 am and the commission said in adherence to measures to limit the spread of Covid-19, strict social distancing protocols will be observed.

(Compiled by Makhosandile Zulu. Additional reporting, News24Wire).

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