Transnet CEO, Siyabonga Gama, has said on the sidelines of a two-day Transnet Indaba in Kempton Park that the transport utility is investigating all of its suppliers for possible kickback payments to third parties.
This is following allegations of state capture and corruption at the state owned company that claim the Gupta family – with ties to President Jacob Zuma, have exerted their influence on state-owned companies to win state contracts.
Gama has said that the investigation is not about Transnet governance or integrity, but rather, about its suppliers. He said the investigations go beyond “Project 359” – a 1 064 locomotives deal that Transnet had awarded to four suppliers in March 2014.
He said the probe would include both current and past staff at Transnet, and some of their audit reports would be finalised this week.
Allegations of corruption in Transnet and other state firms surfaced early march this year, after local media reported on more than 100 000 leaked controversial Gupta emails and documents, which they say demonstrated influence-peddling in the issuing of lucrative tenders, many of which relate to the Gupta family.
According to the media reports, the emails involved Chinese suppliers, China South Rail (CSR), CSR (Hong Kong) Co, Tequesta, a chief lieutenant of the Guptas, Salim Essa, and Sahara CEO, Ashu Chawla. The leaked emails suggest that those particular contracts were a farce and were really corruption masked as providing “advisory services”.