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Gillingham to Bosasa Bosses: Mercedes Benz, please!

"Gavin called me and said," Frans, Patrick needs a new car. "

"Gavin called me and said," Franc, you better get Patrick, he needs a car for his wife. ""

"Gavin cried to me and said," Patrick needed a car for his son. "

One of the main men in Bossa, Frans Vorster, took a witness on Tuesday to the State Investigation Commission and immediately erased a deep Bosasa support for former correctional finance officers Patrick Gillingham.

Gillinghams, it turned out, would not take anything but the best of German engineering – Mercedes Benz, along with cold, hard money.

However, two of his three children, the Volkswagen Polos, should do, and VW Golf with all the extras was his wife.

Gillingham's eldest son was not the recipient of Bosasa's car, Vorster explained.

The President of the Commission, Vice-President Raymond Zondo, pointed out at one stage that "husband, wife and children traveled in cars bought by Bosas".

It was centered on Vorster who testified that Boss's CEO Gavin Watson would invite him to meet Gillingham's every request.

Vorster discovered that Bosasa's relationship with Gillingham began already before the company got its first profitable offer of correction services.

TO READ: Agrizzi Bosasa Wing on Bribery, Demolition, and War Chests

In fact, it was Gillingham, who in 2004 convinced the Correctional Services Division that catering contract outsourcing would be the best practice and would save the department's cash flows.

Bosasa won the R300m offer, led by National Commissioner Linda Mti, who also probably bribed the company in exchange for an offer.

"He (Gillingham) was essentially the driving force behind the process, and then Mr Mti confirmed it," said Vorster.

The main role of Gillingham in the scheme where Bosasa collected more than the value of R2bn from the correction services is well documented in the Special Investigation Unit (SIU) report of 2009.

The SIU report describes him as "an integral part".

But as Bosas first came to Gillingham, it remained a mystery until Wednesday.

Vorster, whose late father also worked in Bosasa and was associated with Gillingham, was the main person selling Gillingham for the idea of ​​working with Krugersdorp.

"Gavin Watson arrived at my office in Lindel [Repatriation Centre] In 2003 and asked me to speak alone. He told me, "Keep Patrick again because he'd love to take part in a tender for a meal contract for repair services," said Vorster.

At this stage, DCS made kitchens in its premises and in detention facilities, and the idea of ​​outsourcing was not yet available.

Soon Vorster was called to the now famous vault of Bosasa's headquarters, where he would be handing over the money that had to be transferred to Gillingham.

Vorster would then pack the money in an A4 envelope to look like documents.

"I met Patrick at a particular restaurant, mainly in Pretoria or Centurion, and we would discuss the specs and menus for the kitchens of the repair service. I'll pass the envelope and take the information back," he explained.

The amounts were different – between R5,000, R10,000 and R20,000.

Warper described the relationship between Watson and Mti as "good and close", which led to the appointment of Gillingham in the Mti Repair Services Procurement Division.

Mti later appointed Gillingham as chief financial officer.

Soon after Bosas got a kitchen offer in 2004, Vorster said that Watson had instructed him to help Gillingem buy Mercedes Benz.

At that time, Gillingham traveled with an old Mercedes Benz E240, which had a large number of kilometers on the clock and a broken left lamp. The dealer offered him a trading value of R89,000.

Bosasa bought a car from Gillingham for R155,000, which was paid directly to his bank account, and then paid for a new Mercedes.

"We paid much more than it was worth," said Vorster.

The fate of the old Mercedes Benz was not revealed.

The following year Vorster was invited to buy Volkswagen Golf for Gillingham's wife.

"Gavin called me and said," Franc, you better get Patrick, he needs a car for his wife. ""

A year later, Gavin's call came again – this time Gillingham's son needed a car.

Bosas also bought VW Polo for his daughter, but Vorster said he was on vacation when it was done.

Soon Gillingam needed a new Mercedes Benz and Vorster again.

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He testified that Bosasa would use a variety of tricks to hide the cash flow paid to the various dealers.

"It was done so that if someone came, they wouldn't be able to pick it up. Internal auditors couldn't even do it."

Over the years, Bosasa also acquired VW Touareg V8 and created luxury homes for both Mti and Gillingham.

Warner said that Bosasa had financed housing construction in Midstream, Gillingham, and Savannah Hills Mti, complete with customized kitchens and luxury furniture.

Nowadays, according to Agrizzi, Gillingham manages Mercedes GLA200 courtesy of the company owned by Watson's brother, Mark Taverner.

Warper also testified that Watson had instructed him to rent a convertible in December 2015 to Nomvul Mokonyane, the then minister of water affairs.

If a convertible cannot be obtained, Bosasa paid for the rental of the Audi A3.

During the SIU investigation Vorster was asked to destroy the evidence. He obtained documents related to the acquisition of VW Touareg by Mti from an employee at the dealer and burned the file.

"Who said all this should be done? The probe asked at one point.

"It was a decision taken by Gavin, Angelo and I, the crew at this stage," said Vorster.

The commission is expected to resume on Thursday.

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