There was nothing untoward about Bosasa loan, says Smith

Written by on 4th Sep 2020

The former Chairperson of the Parliament’s Portfolio Committee on Correctional Services, Vincent Smith, has told  the State Capture Inquiry, that he saw nothing wrong with the more than R700 000 he received from Bosasa’s former Chief Operations Officer (COO) Angelo Agrizzi.

He appeared before the inquiry on Friday, September 4, 2020.

Smith had been implicated by Agrizzi, who told the commission he had received the money as a bribe from the controversial company.

“In terms of the loan, I had bought shares in Euro Blitz so I told Mr Agrizzi that when the shares mature, I was going to pay him back as I needed to pay school fees at the time. We had discussed the loans in an email in which I requested assistance,” he said.

Smith admitted to not having any documentation to back up his claim that it was a loan, saying he believed the company’s late CEO Gavin Watson trusted him.

“There were no such documents. If the commission is asking was there a written loan agreement, there was no such documents. I’m not a lawyer but my understanding was that this type of loan didn’t need a written agreement. There was no such agreement”, he said.

He said the money was meant for paying towards his daughter’s tuition fees overseas.

 “I think it was a matter of trust and if indeed there was going to be a requirement for a written agreement, I don’t think it would have been a problem. It would have been a one liner because in my own financial statements which were audited, it is raised as a loan, chairperson”, he said.

“So in my mind, there was nothing untoward about it. It was there, it still is there…I don’t recall either myself or Mr Agrizzi suggesting that it should be reduced to writing”.


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