Gupta brothers, Duduzane want to cross-examine state capture witnesses

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JOHANNESBURG, September 3 – The controversial Gupta family and former president Jacob Zuma’s son, Duduzane, want to cross-examine state capture inquiry witnesses; ex-parliamentarian Vytjie Mentor, former government spin doctor Themba Maseko and former finance minister Mcebisi Jonas, it emerged during the inquiry on Monday.

Explosive evidence from Mentor, Maseko and Jonas implicated Zuma and the Guptas extensively in the looting of State resources and influencing key government decisions.

”Mr Ajay Gupta has filed an application in terms of rules of this commission, to cross-examine Mr Maseko and Miss Mentor. He has also filed an affidavit in respect of both parties setting out his versions of the event,” said Mike Hellens, a legal representative of the Guptas.

Rajesh ‘Tony’ Gupta and Duduzane are represented by Dawie Joubert.

Other legal representatives also filed applications to question witnesses on behalf of their implicated clients.

The clients include businessman Fana Hlongwane, former public enterprises minister Lynne Brown, and Directorate for Priority Crime Investigations (DPCI) top officials – Mandla Mtolo and Zintle Mnonopi, the head of the anti-corruption task team.

Jonas told the commission that Mnonopi tried to quash his case against the Guptas and the former president when he complained that he was offered a R600 million bribe and a promotion to become finance minister by the Guptas at their Saxonwold compound. Jonas said Mnonopi tried to force him to sign a statement she prepared that would close the probe into the Guptas and Zuma.

Mentor alleged that Hawks’ advocate Mtolo arrived at her Durbanville home for a meeting regarding progress on her case when he presented her with a ”corrupted” typed version of her statement to investigators. She said the statement contained errors and did not represent her original statement.

The former ANC MP accused the Guptas of offering her a public enterprises ministry post as Zuma sat in the next room at the Saxonwold mansion.

Zuma is yet to officially indicate his willingness to cross-examine witnesses. Commission chairman Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo said Zuma’s legal representative has written to the commission ”indicating a certain attitude” to cross-examine.

– African News Agency (ANA)