Cape Town – In the case of ANC MP and former State Security Minister Bongani Bongo, the prosecution has stated that it will seek acquittal when the court resumes on Wednesday. State evidence in the case of ANC MP and former Secretary of State Security Bongani Bongo ended this morning with evidence from Lieutenant-Colonel Vincent Mokwena, the Hawks officer who investigated the matter.
Bongo’s lawyer, Mike Hellens SC, after the state closed its case. Judge President John Hlophe told Judge President John Hlophe that when the case resumes on Wednesday morning, he will bring a Section 174 motion to dismiss the case along with his arguments.
Earlier, Mokwena presented evidence of how he had interviewed Ntuthuzelo Vanara, a former senior parliamentary official, at a hotel in Pretoria about the allegations made by Vanara about Bongo, which led to the lawsuit.
Mokwena later told how he had received a statement from Bongo at his home in Midrand. In an effort to disrupt a 2017 parliamentary inquiry into state-owned enterprises and Eskom, Bongo pleaded not guilty to a charge of attempting to bribe Vanara.
During Friday’s proceedings, the question of whether, with regard to the Prevention and Combating of Corrupt Activities (Poca) Act, administrators in Parliament should have reported an accusation of an attempted bribe to the police or not dominated proceedings.
The act allows people in public and private sector positions of authority to report to the police misconduct and other crimes specified in the act. Hellens made a point of repeatedly asking every witness, all of whom were senior parliamentary managers, if they had submitted to the Hawks upon hearing the allegations made about the supposed bribe.
After pressing Modibedi Phindela, State Witness Advocate, on the issue, Hellens said, “I don’t know if to ask the question again, or record that you didn’t answer it?” ” Phindela replied: “I have answered the question in my mind.” “Judge Hlophe, addressing Phindela,
said: “Mr Hellens, to my knowledge, has attempted to put the following to you: the Poca Act imposes an obligation on everyone who suspects that corruption has been committed, or who has fair suspicion of corruption being committed, to report it to the Hawks or the police. Is it your case that you are not allowed to report it to the Hawks by law until you have reported the matter to the administration? “Judge Hlophe asked.
Tyawa said, “Unfortunately, Your Honor, I can’t remember everything, especially things that have nothing to do with governance.” “Judge Hlophe said: “It is important because it is not a crime if lawyer Bongo or someone approached the evidence leader to collapse the investigation, or expressed the opinion that they wished the investigation would go away. He’s really sharing his life.
However, when defender Bongo, or someone else, proposes a bribe, it becomes a crime. For whatever reason, there is a big difference in wanting the investigation to go down. It is not and is never going to be a felony.
“It is a crime, however, to go further and say that I want to pay you so much to end this inquiry,” said Judge Hlophe. Tyawa said: “I have nothing to say unless I have never been immersed in the case.” I was never going to recall every term and things like that, and I wasn’t going to worry about it until I got close to coming here.