Former deputy Finance Minister Mcebisi Jonas returns to the Zondo Commission for cross-examination on Friday, 15 March 2019.
The ongoing Zondo Commission will hear a cross-examination of former deputy Finance Minister Mcebisi Jonas by Fana Hlongwane and Duduzane Zuma’s legal teams. Jonas will also complete his testimony at today’s hearing.
During his appearance at the inquiry in 2018, Jonas relayed his encounter with one of the Gupta brothers. He also implicated Fana Hlongwane and Duduzane Zuma. Jonas had told the inquiry that he had been invited by Zuma to a meeting but was later informed that other people would be joining the meeting. He said he was driven to the Gupta compound in Saxonwold, where he was shocked to see Hlongwane also present at the meeting. He says Ajay Gupta walked into the meeting, and was the only person speaking, as Hlongwane and Zuma kept silent.
Jonas recalled how Ajay Gupta offered him R600 million and an immediate fee of R600 000 cash, after he explained then-President Jacob Zuma’s plan to fire then-Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene and have Jonas succeed him.
“He said that at the moment, we, which I understood again to be the Gupta family, earn about R6 billion from the fiscus through various entities including Eskom, Transnet, and government departments. He said that they wanted to increase this amount to R8 billion. Mr Gupta said that they had determined that the National Treasury was the stumbling block for their growth and that they wanted to clean up Treasury,” Jonas reportedly said.
The first legal team to cross-examine Jonas was Duduzane Zuma’s team.