On the morning of Friday, September 29th, Dudu Myeni, a close confidante of former President Jacob Zuma and ex-chairperson of South African Airways (SAA), was arrested on charges of fraud and corruption. In addition to her, former Bosasa director Trevor Mathenjwa was also taken into custody. The duo later appeared in the Richards Bay Magistrate’s Court, where they were granted bail set at R10,000 ($522 USD) each.
The charges stem from alleged kickbacks Myeni received during her tenure at SAA, believed to be facilitated by Mathenjwa. The Investigating Directorate spokesperson, Sindisiwe Seboka, disclosed that the matter involving Myeni and Mathenjwa has been postponed to November 17th.
The heart of the allegations lies in the Bosasa corruption scandal, where Myeni is accused of receiving gratifications amounting to R300,000. The gratifications reportedly include security upgrades to her Richards Bay premises valued at R200,000 and over R107,000 for hotel accommodations and travel expenses facilitated by Blake Travels, all courtesy of Bosasa and its subsidiary, Sondolo IT.
The Commission of Inquiry into State Capture found Myeni guilty of facilitating corruption, particularly influencing former President Zuma to favor Bosasa, a facilities management company embroiled in “industrial-scale corruption.” The report revealed that Bosasa secured R2.3 billion from 2000 to 2016, paying R75 million in bribes to politicians and officials. Myeni allegedly received R300,000 in bribes regularly, dodged the Commission, and chose silence over self-incrimination.
The Commission’s findings also highlighted Myeni’s instrumental role in halting investigations against Bosasa, even promising to have the National Prosecuting Authority drop the case against them. Her influence over Zuma was deemed unprecedented, facilitating meetings with companies like Falcon Oil and Gas and breaching the Constitution and anti-corruption legislation.
This unfolding narrative sheds light on the intricate web of corruption that has entangled high-profile individuals and corporations, raising questions about the integrity of governance and the accountability mechanisms in place.