‘I had a throat infection’- Zwane defends using Gupta jet for Switzerland trip

Testifying before the Zondo Commission, Zwane on Tuesday defended his trip to Switzerland in December 2015.

A screengrab of former Free State MEC Mosebenzi Zwane appearing at the state capture inquiry on 11 December 2020. Picture: SABC/YouTube

JOHANNESBURG - The state capture inquiry has zoomed in on former Mineral Resources Minister Mosebenzi Zwane's relationship with Gupta associate, Salim Essa.

Testifying before the Zondo Commission, Zwane on Tuesday defended his trip to Switzerland in December 2015.

That visit was followed by the sale of Glencore's Optimum coal mine to Gupta-owned Tegeta.

During his trip to Switzerland in December 2015, Zwane met with the CEO of Glencore to discuss the future of Optimum Coal mine.

The minister, the CEO, Tony Gupta and Salim Essa were present at that meeting.

Zwane, who told the Zondo Commission that he had only met the Guptas on two occasions, then travelled to India from Switzerland on board the Guptas' private jet to attend to official government business.

He said that a throat infection would have prevented him from communicating with people had he taken a commercial flight.

Soon after the trip, Glencore sold the Optimum coal mine to Tegeta.

Zwane has told the state capture inquiry he had no influence in the final deal.

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