Just as South Africans were starting to come to grips with the staggering cost of state capture, the Bosasa bombshell hit the country. This grand-scale corruption scandal cost South Africa billions of rands while the politicians involved were bought for as little as braai packs and booze.
While investigating state capture, The Zondo commission of inquiry blew the lid off the tangled web of bribery that was Bosasa. Gripping testimony before the commission about “little black books”, cash bribes and walk-in vaults held the public in thrall while a new realisation dawned: The notorious Gupta family had not been the only ones pillaging the country. In The Bosasa Billions, best-selling author James-Brent Styan and co-writer Paul Vecchiatto uncover the sordid story of how one company exploited the greed of corrupt politicians and bureaucrats to establish an extensive tender network stretching right to the top of the ANC government.
Its cast of characters include:
- Angelo Agrizzi, the whistleblower who makes new revelations to Styan about the secrets behind Bosasa’s glittering profit margins
- Vernie Petersen, the prisons boss who waged a lonely battle against the dark forces taking over his department, and
- Gavin Watson, the ultra-religious Bosasa puppet master who parlayed his family’s struggle credentials into vast wealth while leading his employees in prayer every morning.
Ultimately, however, Bosasa was not in the business of saving souls, but selling them.
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