Deputy President David ‘DD’ Mabuza’s former messenger, Jan Venter, has denied he laid criminal charges against him to settle personal and political scores at the behest of other people, according to a report in The Sunday Independent.

Insisting he was not a hired gun out to discredit and destroy his former boss, Venter reportedly noted he charged the former Mpumalanga Premier with corruption, bribery and money laundering in May 2018 because he wanted the truth about his former boss to be known.

He accused Mabuza of having paid him R2.5m in monthly tranches of between R40 000 and R100 000 to do his dirty work, lie under oath against ANC veteran Mathews Phosa and move money and guns around for years until their fallout last year.

Venter said he approached the Hawks two years ago to hand himself over – ‘not to cut a deal’ – over his alleged criminal activities with Mabuza because he wanted to repent and be forgiven by God.

‘DD asked me to say I saw Phosa draft a spy report against him, and I lied about it because DD asked me to lie. But I am not innocent. Not at all. I am as guilty as DD Mabuza. That’s why I drove to the Hawks. I thought it was much safer for me being in jail than being outside here,’ Venter said.

The Hawks reportedly confirmed they were investigating a case of corruption and money laundering, but declined to reveal who the main suspect was, says The Sunday Independent report.

However, in his progress report sent to Venter on 19 December last year, Hawks investigator Colonel Herby Heap said via a text: ‘1. Your matter has been received back from the NPA. 2. It has been requested that further statements be obtained. 3. Further financial analysis must also be conducted. 4. The matter has been registered on CAS video Nelspruit CAS 250/12/2019. 5. Kindly note that as it is the festive season and possible witnesses are not available your next progress report will be in mid-January 2020.’

‘DD’ Mabuza’s spokesperson Thamsanqa Ngwenya said the matter had already been aired in open court, where Venter’s credibility and evidence were tested and brought to serious question.

‘Therefore, making the same allegations in 2020 is not only absurd, but delusional. It is unimaginable as to why anyone would want to rehash these old matters, except if the intention is to besmirch the name, character and societal standing of Deputy President Mabuza. Any questions on Hawks investigations must be directed to them or the Minister of Police,’ he is quoted as saying.

Full report in The Sunday Independent (subscription needed)