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Blackhead's Sodi denies millions paid to ANC & housing officials were kickbacks

Blackhead director Edwin Sodi was back at the state capture commission on Tuesday, where he admitted that his company didn't have the expertise or accreditation to handle asbestos.

FILE: A screengrab shows Edwin Sodi at the state capture inquiry on 19 August 2020. Picture: SABC/YouTube

JOHANNESBURG - Blackhead director Edwin Sodi has confirmed that his company received contracts in excess of R1 billion over 10 years and paid millions in that to housing and African National Congress (ANC) officials in various provinces but he denied that they were kickbacks.

Sodi was back at the state capture commission, where he admitted that his company didn't have the expertise or accreditation to handle asbestos.

But his partner, Ignatius Mpambane, who was gunned down in Sandton in 2017, ensured that the company got a R255 million contract to do that work in the Free State.

The commission has records showing how Sodi and Blackhead donated millions to the ANC, transferred money to Zizi Kodwa, Thulas Nxesi, Pinky Kekana, Paul Mashatile and Zweli Mkhize; paid R7.5 million to former Gauteng housing executive Bongani More; R600,000 for former national Human Settlements Director-General Thabane Zulu to buy a Range Rover and many others.

Evidence leader Advocate Paul Pretorius questioned Sodi about this.

"Blackhead received payments from the departments of Human Settlements in excess of a billion rand over the 10 year period up to 2019, correct?"

To which Sodi replied: "That's possibly correct, chair. I think to expand on that, a lot of the work that we do is in Human Settlements."

When the Auditor-General declared the Free State asbestos contract irregular and housing HOD Nthimotse Mokhesi was left to decided if Blackhead should be paid, Sodi said that he arranged an investment agreement with Mokhesi and paid R650,000 for a bond so that Mokhesi could buy a house.

But he said that the two were not related and that the money was an investment and Blackhead would still be paid with or without Mokhesi.

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