Connected businessman in R380m SABC licence-fee deal
Politically connected businessman Kuben Moodley stands to rake in R380m from a suspect debt-collection deal with the SABC authorised by the broadcaster’s acting CE, James Aguma, according to a Sunday Times report. It notes Moodley is a former special adviser to Mineral Resources Minister Mosebenzi Zwane and golf partner of Salim Essa, a kingpin in the Gupta empire.
Internal documents, reportedly seen by the Sunday Times, reveal that Aguma awarded the contract to Moodley’s company LornaVision last year without going out to tender. The SABC’s executive committee approved deviating from normal tender processes in appointing LornaVision on 24 June last year, a day after it got tax clearance, the report states. It says three weeks after LornaVision was appointed it invoiced the SABC the full consulting fee of R2.1m for its 24-month pilot upfront – and was paid in full six weeks later.
According to LornaVision’s contract, Moodley’s company stands to make a total of R383.5m if it meets its proposed targets. The Sunday Times says Moodley did not respond to detailed questions, including the nature of his relationship with Zwane and Essa, his company’s performance and commission earned and how it came to hear the SABC required its services in the absence of an advertised tender.
‘This is a contingency-based agreement, meaning the company does not earn any return if it does not recover,’ he reportedly said in a text message. ‘All governance processes were followed. Who my acquaintances are is irrelevant to the matter on hand, further I am not currently an advisor to the DMR (Department of Mineral Resources).’ Aguma did not respond to repeated requests for comment, the report states.
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