The four people accused of stealing millions of rands for Eskom projects were released on bail of R300 000 each on Thursday.
The following accused appeared in the Johannesburg regional court on Thursday on charges of fraud, corruption and money laundering:
- Abraham Masango, a former Eskom chief responsible for managing capital and construction at Eskom’s power plants Medupi and Kusile
- Mangope France Hlakudi, a former senior manager at Eskom
- Antonio Jose Da Costa Trindade, a director and shareholder of Tubular Holdings (Pty) Ltd
- Maphoko Hudson Kgomoeswana, owner and manager of Babinatlou CC.
A warrant was also issued for the arrest of Michael Harry Lomas, a Briton who served Tubular Holdings (Pty) Ltd in various ways.
The following companies are also involved in the complaints: Hlakudi Translation and Interpretation Services (HTI); Bon Serve Telecom; Tubular Construction Projects (Pty) Ltd (TCP); Abeyla Trading (Pty) Ltd; Tubular Technical Construction (Pty) Ltd, Cosira Tubular Joint Venture (Pty) Ltd; and Babinatlou Business Services CC (Babinatlou).
The Hawks, in conjunction with the National Prosecuting Authority’s investigative directorate, arrested the suspects in Limpopo, Mpumalanga and Gauteng respectively on Tuesday morning.
The arrest on Thursday is the result of a multi-disciplinary investigation by members of the Hawks, the Special Investigative Unit (SIU), the Financial Intelligence Center (FIC) and the South African Revenue Service (SARS), led by the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) investigative directorate . “The investigation forms part of the directorate’s strategy to reclaim South Africa’s state-owned entities from state hijacking,” said NPA spokesperson Bulelwa Makeke.
The case was postponed to May 25, with the intention of including Lomas in the proceedings. He is currently in Britain. The case will then be referred to the High Court.
According to Makeke, the charges stem from a corrupt contract between Eskom and TCP. A preliminary investigation has indicated that contractual agreements between contractors, Eskom employees and third parties at the Kusile power plant were horribly manipulated. The accused allegedly split up to R30m among each other.