Peter Pedlar will replace Khotso de Wee who is on special leave pending a probe into his implication in corruption by a witness.
The chairperson of the commission on inquiry into state capture, Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo, yesterday announced the appointment of Peter Pedlar as acting secretary of the commission. Pedlar replaces Dr Khotso De Wee, who is currently on special leave pending an investigation into his implication in corruption by a witness.
De Wee is implicated in the affidavit of Angelo Agrizzi, who is currently appearing before the commission, as having received bribes from Bosasa, Agrizzi’s former employer.
The Department of Justice and Constitutional Development is one of those that allegedly had officials connected to Bosasa through bribes. In 2008 the department awarded Bosasa a contract to provide security services at several courts across the country. De Wee was the department’s COO at the time.
In his statement, Agrizzi, who is the former Bosasa COO, submits that he was told about De Wee by an associate of the company, Sesinyi Seopela – whom he has described in his testimony as a middle man who would often deliver bags of cash to public officials who facilitated favours for the company.
Seopela allegedly told Agrizzi that De Wee, being one of several officials within the department who received regular cash payments from him, was unhappy about the irregularity of delivery. Beyond this, said Agrizzi when questioned about it be evidence leader Paul Pretorius, he knew no more and had never attempted to verify the information relayed by Seopela to him. He also said he had never met De Wee.
Zondo announced last week that he had approached De Wee with the information. “He confirmed that he was COO of the department at the time, but he has informed me that he was never at any stage paid any money by Bosasa or by anybody from Bosasa including the person mentioned in Mr Agrizzi’s affidavit,” he said. De Wee, said Zondo, had offered to go on special leave, to allow space for the investigators.
Regarding Pedlar’s appointment, Zondo said: “Should the investigation into the allegation made against Dr De Wee be finalised earlier than 28 February 2019, Mr Pedlar’s acting appointment may be terminated earlier.”
Among his previous positions, Pedlar was CFO for both Denel and Artscape, with the latter being his most recent post. He has also worked in the Gautrain Management Agency; the Human Sciences Research Council and the State Information Technology Agency, among others.