Nomvula Mokonyane trends for not knowing who paid for her 40th birthday party

Former environmental affairs minister Nomvula Mokonyane's “no recollection” of who footed the bill for her 40th birthday party, which was allegedly paid for by Bosasa, has been the talk of social media.

Mokonyane appeared at the Zondo commission on Thursday.

In July, Mokonyane disputed that any of her birthday celebrations were held at the Victorian Guest House in Krugersdorp, but after testimony from witnesses, she was called back to explain the contradictions in her statement.

The owner of the guest house, Frederick Hendrick Coetzee, on August 25 told the inquiry that Bosasa paid R41,000 for Mokonyane's birthday party.

When asked about how she forgot that her 40th birthday celebration had been held there, Mokonyane said the party took place more than a decade ago and that she “forgot”. Mokonyane said she did not know who had paid for the party, which she initially thought was a private family dinner.

“I can't attest how it ended up being a party because there was a plan to celebrate by going out to dinner, with a few people joining us for dinner and then we'd be coming back home,” said Mokonyane.

Mokonyane said that at the party she thanked everyone who had organised and made the party, including people from the township.

Under questioning by advocate Viwe Notshe, Mokonyane maintained that she and her late husband Serge had not organised it. However, in her affidavit in response to Coetzee, Mokonyane assumed that her husband had paid for the party.

Mokonyane also didn't recall seeing former Bosasa boss Angelo Agrizzi at the party.

“I mean he is white, I would have seen him. He would have been outstanding in the crowd,” said Mokonyane.

Agrizzi told the commission last year that the late Bosasa CEO Gavin Watson had ordered that Mokonyane's birthday party be organised and be paid for by the controversial company.

On social media, many weighed in on Mokonyane's back-pedalling.

Here is a snapshot of some of the reactions.

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