PRETORIA – Raids by the Hawks on Free State government departments have put ANC secretary-general Ace Magushule and mineral Resources Minister Mosebenzi Zwane squarely in the state capture cross hairs.
The unit has confirmed it is executing search and seizure operations at the Free State Premier’s office as well as the Agriculture Department in connection with the investigation of the Estina Dairy Farm project.
Magashule is still the premier of that province, while Zwane is the former Agriculture MEC. Both have been linked to a scheme to unlawfully enrich the Guptas.
The Estina Dairy Farm project was supposed to benefit poor and emerging farmers in the Vrede area, instead the Guptas allegedly scored more than R100 million which was channelled out of the country to Dubai.
The Gupta leaks revealed that the project was conceived by Zwane and supported by Magashule.
The Hawks’ Hangwani Mulaudzi says evidence gathered on Friday morning will be analysed and included in the docket, which will then be sent back to the National Prosecuting Authority.
“We are hoping to finalise this end of the investigation. If there’s a need to take people to court then let’s take them as soon as possible.”
The Asset Forfeiture Unit seized the farm and hundreds of millions of rand linked to the project last week.
by Barry Bateman for EWN