Former Transport Minister, Dipuo Peters, is continuing with her testimony at the commission of inquiry into State Capture, sitting in Johannesburg. Yesterday, the former minister told the commission that her decision to remove the board under former Prasa chair, Popo Molefe, was the right one.
Prasa’s irregular expenditure sky-rocketed from R5.5 billion in 2015 to R24 billion in 2018. Peters said she wanted answers from the board, which were not forthcoming.
She says the auditor General had various meetings with her and flagged these expenditures. She eventually lost patient with the board. Peters said she was also concerned about instability of the board under Molefe’s leadership.
“The focus of the board not on the core responsibility of the company was of a concern to me and I raised it even in the meetings I had with them. There are notes and speeches I delivered in those meetings for the record and I want to indicate that ordinarily seating back, there is a saying in life generally that says you regret more the things you dint do than the things you did. I believe my patience with the board of Tata Molefe was over stretched,” she said.
Below is day-two of Peters’ testimony:
Appointment of CEO Lucky Montana
On claims that she was aware of corruption allegations against former Prasa CEO, Lucky Montana, Peters admitted to knowing about them, saying the issue was in the public domain.
She says she even took former President Jacob Zuma through some of the allegations of wrongdoing and litigation against Montana.
Peters has told the commission her department then appointed the Railway Safety Regulator to investigate. She has added that the allegations were further debated by the Transport Portfolio Committee in Parliament.
The former minister told Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo she was not invited to the Transport Portfolio Committee to engage in the Montana debate because she was an executive.
She, however, details how her department sprung into action and investigated the corruption allegations against Montana and even wrote a report.
Montana is alleged to have used millions of Prasa money to fund his luxurious lifestyle.
Peters’ testimony on Lucky Montana’s appointment: