Former Transnet executive, co-accused granted bail as corruption case postponed to 2023

November 9, 2022 0 By Cypher9ja

A former Transnet executive and two others accused of corruption and money laundering have been granted R10 000 bail.

Former Transnet Freight Rail’s head of legal and forensics, Kenneth Diedricks as well as Polyzomba Rail Contractors managers, Charles Pretorius and Refiloe Martins, made their first appearance before the Johannesburg Specialised Crimes Court in Palm Ridge on Wednesday, in connection to a multimillion tender scandal.

The State did not oppose the accused’s bail as it believed that the three were not flight risks.

Unlawful payment

According to the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA), Diedricks allegedly signed off a R25 million payment to Polyzomba, which was contracted to Transnet, in 2011, following a contractual dispute lodged by the rail maintenance company.

The payment was made to the company before the dispute could be settled without Transnet’s approval.

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Diedricks allegedly was paid at least R300 000 by Polyzomba after the R25 million was received.

The former Transnet executive used the funds he received to contribute to the purchase a house in Bassonia, Johannesburg, to the value of R3,7 million.

He is also accused of receiving a carpet worth R20 000 from another company contracted to Transnet.

NPA Gauteng spokesperson, Phindi Mjonondwane told eNCA that Polyzomba’s contract – from 2006 to 2011 – with Transnet was valued more than R60 million.

“After the completion of the work and expiry of the tender, [the company] lodged a dispute claiming R25 million for additional work that they have done and have not received payment from Transnet,” she said.

The case, Mjonondwane said, has since been postponed to 7 March 2023, “for the state to disclose the contents of the docket to the defence and for a pre-trial hearing”.

Transnet corruption case

Meanwhile, several former Transnet executives, including former CEO Brian Molefe, will return to the dock later on 30 November.

Molefe and his co-accused, including former Transnet CEO Siyabonga Gama and chief financial officer (CFO) Anoj Singh, have been charged with fraud, corruption, money laundering and the contravention of the Public Finance Management Act (PFMA) related to the parastatal’s procurement of 1 064 locomotives in 2015, worth over R54 billion.

The other accused in the matter include former Transnet group chief financial officer Garry Pita and ex-group treasurer Phetolo Ramosebudi, Regiments Capital directors Niven Pillay and Litha Nyhonyha, Regiments shareholder Eric Wood, Trillian Asset Management current director Daniel Roy and alleged Gupta middleman, Kuben Moodley.

Molefe, Singh, Wood and Roy were released on bail of R50 000 each at their first court appearance in August.

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