Des van Rooyen dropped one of the most astonishing revelations heard during the State Capture Inquiry since its inception two years ago. The former finance minister (for four days, anyway) revealed that the Gupta family and Bashir Saleh – a close associate of Muammar Gaddafi – “were” at his appointment.
Des van Rooyen and his first encounter with the Guptas
A day of twists, detours and tantalizing testimonies, van Rooyen described his first encounters with the Gupta family, which took place a few months before Jacob Zuma gave him the keys to the Treasury for a weekend:
“The Guptas came in as a sponsor for a successful golf event that our MK Vets department hosted in 2015. And they continued with another sponsorship as one of the top three sponsors of the next golf event. We are looking at roughly 2 million Rand that they contributed to these two events respectively. ”
“Gupta made a submission during our first engagement: he told about their company’s relationship with the ANC but also with MK veterans. His idea was to tell me as general treasurer; “We are also working [with] your association ”.”
State capture investigation obtains ‘explosive testimony’ from Des van Rooyen
However, it was not just the Guptas who got involved in government affairs. Des van Rooyen says he was hosted by Bashir Saleh just days before his infamous meeting with Jacob Zuma:
“I must have called on some members of our association: I have met Rajesh‘ Tony ’Gupta several times and he has introduced me to other members of the Gupta family. I was fresh out of a conference in October 2015 and Tony came to my office at Luthuli House. It was not an organized meeting or a date.
“I met the Guptas [a week before being appointed as finance minister]. I called the Gupta Residence and was told Tony was there. So, I went there to try my luck – but it was busy with other meetings. I was greeted by a businessman, Bashir Saleh, when I was sworn in as Minister of Finance a few days later.
Who is Bashir Saleh?
Now the news is turning heads: Bashir Saleh was considered a “war criminal” when he entered South Africa. Furthermore, this confessional raised more questions about Jacob Zuma’s alleged ties to former Libyan leader Gaddafi – and $ 30 million missing that would be left to Msholozi:
- Bashir Saleh has been colloquially referred to as Muammar Gaddafi’s “former banker”.
- A French judicial inquiry has revealed that he was “smuggled” out of the country following a presidential funding line in 2012.
- He was on Interpol’s most wanted list when traveling freely in South Africa between 2013 and 2016.
- Saleh is said to have attended ANC conferences and meetings in the BRICS countries.
- The powerful Libyan figure is also accused of hiding Gaddafi’s cash reserves in South Africa – more specifically, in a bunker at Jacob Zuma’s house in Nkandla. The presence of Bashir Saleh at this political ceremony is therefore extremely suspicious.
According to his testimony today, Eric Wood and Bashir Saleh are among the people Van Rooyen reports he met at Melrose Arch when former President Jacob Zuma appointed him finance minister in December 2015.
– Erin Bates (@ermbates) Aug 11, 2020