South Africa: Gravy Trains, Always On Time - Cash From Prasa's R3.5bn Locomotives Deal Also Flowed to Jacob Zuma Foundation

(File photo).

In 2015, a multibillion-rand contract from the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa for much-needed new rolling stock was derailed amid the infamous tall trains scandal. Scorpio can now reveal that the Jacob Zuma Foundation is among a slew of third parties that benefited from the almost R800-million in alleged loot emanating from the ill-fated contract.

The first signs of possible large-scale corruption emerged soon after the deal was closed, when businesspeople with links to then-president Jacob Zuma were identified as recipients of some of the deal's proceeds.

Scorpio can today reveal that Swifambo in June 2015 channelled R150,000 to former president Jacob Zuma's namesake non-profit foundation.

The payment to the Jacob G. Zuma Foundation from front company Swifambo Rail Leasing during the rollout of the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa's (Prasa) R3.5-billion locomotives contract adds fresh impetus to allegations that the deal was accompanied by large-scale corruption involving South Africa's most senior government leaders.

Swifambo effected the transaction only a week after it secured a R182-million payment from Prasa, its penultimate payday in a series of payments from the state-owned rail operator.

The now-liquidated company and its sister entity, Swifambo Holdings, received R2.6-billion from Prasa between April 2013...

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