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Anoj Singh blocked access to tender data centre, inquiry told

Mathane Makgatho has been testifying at the state capture commission of inquiry on the role of Transnet’s treasury unit during the issuing of the multi-billion rand tender.

A YouTube screengrab shows Mathane Makgatho at the state capture commission on 6 June 2019.

JOHANNESBURG - Former Transnet group treasurer Mathane Makgatho claimed the company’s former group CFO Anoj Singh ordered that she be blocked from accessing a data centre where tender bids were being processed for the controversial locomotives deal.

Makgatho has on Thursday been testifying at the state capture commission of inquiry on the role of Transnet’s treasury unit during the issuing of the multi-billion rand tender.

She alleged that after forcing her way into the data centre to form part of the review process of submitted tender documents by bidders, she noticed that some candidates for the deal had similar BEE partners in their paperwork.

“Normal procedures would include reviewing the tender document. As I was reviewing, I realised that two or three bidders had a similar name. There was one name that appeared for two or three bidders. This was a red flag for me, chair.”

On Wednesday, financial risk management expert Dr Jonathan Bloom, who was hired to investigate irregularities at Transnet, told the commission that the company lost close to R1 billion during the procurement of the 1,064 locomotives.

SINGH WAS A LOOSE CANNON, SEEMED VERY CORRUPT

Makgatho said she felt betrayed by then Transnet CEO Brian Molefe for giving Singh too much power at the parastatal.

The former treasurer said Singh was a loose cannon who was reckless and had corrupt tendencies that put the financial stability of Transnet at risk.

“The GCFO was doing as he wished and what I couldn’t grasp was that the man was running like a loose cannon and the GCE was giving him more and more power.”

Makgatho said Molefe ignored her warnings about Singh.

“Because he was very reckless, I could see he was a very corrupt guy. Mr Molefe was a smooth character, street smart and plays his balls very carefully. He makes people feel important.”

WATCH LIVE: Former Transnet group treasurer testifies at state capture commission

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