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‘Trillian paid millions for work that could’ve been done by Transnet’

The state capture commission of inquiry also heard how a Transnet contract with Regiments Capital, with an R9 million cap on it, ballooned to nearly R300 million.

A woman holds a poster during a protest against McKinsey over 'irregular payments' involving Eskom and Trillian on 5 October 2017. Picture: Supplied.

PRETORIA - The state capture commission of inquiry has heard how Transnet paid consultancy firms tens of millions of rands for work that could have been performed internally.

These were among the submissions from acting group chief executive Mohammed Mahomedy at the hearings in Parktown on Wednesday.

Mahomedy described how contracts worth billions of rands were irregular and bypassed procurement procedures.

Mahomedy said Trillian Capital Partners was hired to facilitate syndication of banks to lend Transnet money.

“For which Trillian charged us, including VAT, approximately R93.5 million.”

“For what?” Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo asked.

Mahomedy responded: “That’s exactly the question we asked because the Treasury team at Transnet had the capability to execute all of the transactions and we could not understand why.”

The commission also heard how a Transnet contract with Regiments Capital, with an R9 million cap on it, ballooned to nearly R300 million.

A week ago, board chair Popo Molefe implicated former senior officials Brian Molefe, Anoj Singh and Siyabonga Gama in irregularities at the parastatal.

Mahomedy referred to a contract Transnet entered into with Regiments Capital.

“This is the document that I’m referencing, which says there’s an agreement between Transnet and Regiments Capital. If we look at the signatures on the document, Mr Singh is a signatory.”

Mahomedy then read one of the terms of the deal.

“It says costs and payment against this scope may not be made above R9 million without specific approval. This is 2014, we later learn that this amount exceeded R285 million.”

He said Transnet’s treasury department was capable of doing this work.

Transnet is not the only company to have had significant dealings with the Gupta-linked company.

Power producer Eskom is trying to recover R600 million from Trillian, which Eskom alleges the company was paid unlawfully.

WATCH LIVE: Transnet head details capture of parastatal

(Edited by Zamangwane Shange)