A company that is accused of allegedly facilitating a gift of R1.5million worth of cattle to former president, Jacob Zuma, has denied these allegations. These cows were meant to benefit emerging farmers in the North West province, but were said to have been delivered to Nkandla, Zuma’s rural homestead in KwaZulu-Natal.
Those who made these allegations claimed that former North West premier, Supra Mahumapelo, arranged that the cows be delivered to Zuma as a gift.
But now the company said to be at the centre of this saga, AgriDelight, appeared before the provincial legislature’s portfolio committee on Economic Development, Environment, Tourism, Agriculture and Rural Development on Monday and denied the allegations.
AgriDelight director Derrick Montshwe, said the company never received money from the department with an order to purchase cattle for the former president.
“I’m talking on behalf of AgriDelight and myself personally. We have never received money from the department with an order to say ‘supply cattle to the former president’. I just want to - chairperson - come out clear on this. This is an issue that is also under investigation … the information I’m sharing today. I have shared the same information with law enforcement agencies,” said Montshwe.
He also denied allegations of corruption and purchasing a McDonald’s restaurant franchise for Mahumapelo and paying for a nosejob cosmetic surgery for then MEC of Agriculture, Manketsi Tlhape.
“Yes there have been allegations of corruption. I don’t want to sit here and say ‘no there has never been [or] yes there have been allegations of corruption’. Firstly I think the main highlight was that we [allegedly] purchased McDonald's restaurant for the former premier. I have made it very clear to the police, to anybody, to say ‘I am only using one bank and it’s FNB, so go to FNB and check if there’s any money that moves from FNB in my bank and goes into McDonald's restaurant.
I think even until today nobody is saying anything. The issue is AgriDelight has no proof of payment or has not done any payment to the franchise of McDonald's,” he said.
Montshwe added: “There’s an issue of the nosejob of the MEC or former MEC. I’ve met with the Hawks on this matter to say ‘can you look at my personal bank account first, look at my business bank account second and then check if maybe there is something wrong. Maybe I paid someone by mistake and I don’t remember. But I have never done such a thing.”
Meanwhile, AgriDelight has taken the provincial department of Economic Development, Environment, Tourism, Agriculture and Rural Development to court for refusing to take the 50 cattle the company has kept in storage for government. AgriDelight’s contract with the department ended two years ago.