South Africa

Agrizzi wants deceased Watson thrown under bus

Bosasa directors asked to testify against their boss. 

A day before and just after Bosasa boss Gavin Watson died, the company’s former chief operating officer Angelo Agrizzi had been sending directors and employees messages calling on them to testify against their boss at the Zondo Commission. Watson died in a mysterious
car accident outside the OR Tambo International Airport on August 26, in what the family believe was a hit, following preliminary reports by a pathologist and an accident expert that concluded he could have perished before the moment of the crash.
In a message to one of the Bosasa directors – dated September 2, a week after Watson’s death – Agrizzi told the official that he wanted to introduce them to the commission’s attorneys “so that you can work with them and indemnify yourself”.

“By now I’m sure you have realised that you as directors have been left out to face what Gavin didn’t want to. And we all know prosecution is imminent, asset forfeiture and Sars [an SA Revenue Service probe] is inevitable.

“What I would like to see is to minimise the effect on yourself by introducing you to the commission’s attorneys,” he said. The day before the accident, Agrizzi – in a clear move to indemnify himself from the allegations of corruption plaguing the facilities management company – sent a WhatsApp message to Selby Albany, a former employee at Bosasa, calling on him to reach out to Linda Mti, the former correctional services commissioner.

“We need someone to call him [Mti] to [say] it is better for him to work with me and turn against the Watsons, who have literally dropped him and will wash their hands of him. At least with working with us and the Hawks we can get this thing over,” he wrote.

“I know that they want Watson more than they want him, but Mti needs to come clean and give info he has to the commission,” he added. Agrizzi confirmed that he has spoken to “some people at Bosasa” to try to get them to help the commission probing state capture but denied he wanted them to implicate Watson.

“Mr Agrizzi has merely explained to the individuals involved that they need to take the opportunity of the commission to ensure that the truth comes out,” said his lawyer Daniel Witz. Agrizzi said: “I have not requested Mr Mti or anyone else to turn against the late Gavin Watson or anyone else.”

By George Matlala
matlalag@sundayworld.co.za