Flight records scrutinised at state capture inquiry

Vytjie Mentor at the state capture inquiry. PICTURE: MASI LOSI
Vytjie Mentor at the state capture inquiry. PICTURE: MASI LOSI

Former ANC MP Vytjie Mentor has insisted that she travelled from Cape Town to Johannesburg on a Monday via SA Airways (SAA) to meet former president Jacob Zuma, despite flight records to the contrary.

Mentor is back at the state capture commission of inquiry after giving evidence in 2018. She is completing her evidence and will be cross-examined as well. after completing her testimony. 

In 2018, Mentor testified that she was called to a meeting with Zuma and flew to Johannesburg sometime between September and October.

However, when she arrived in Johannesburg she was taken to the Gupta’s Sahara Computers and then to their Saxonwold compound. 

She testified that while at the Gupta home she was offered the job of public enterprise minister on condition that she terminate SAA’s Johannesburg to Mumbai, India, route. Mentor said Zuma was at the compound at the same time. 

The commission on Monday scrutinised flight records from SAA that showed that Mentor had not travelled with the airline on that Monday in question. 

However, parliament records of Mentor’s travel booked by its internal travel agency showed Mentor had travelled from Cape Town to Johannesburg via SAA on October 15.

A look at the October 2010 calendar shows that the 15th was a Friday, however, Mentor stands by her evidence that she flew on a Monday morning via SAA.

When asked if she would want the commission to consider flights not on a Monday, Mentor said no.

This could hamper the commission from placing Mentor, members of the Gupta family and Zuma in the Saxonwold area at the time. 

Mentor’s testimony placing Zuma at the house at the time of the alleged meeting where she was offered the job, had not been contested by the former president.

Deputy chief justice Raymond Zondo on Monday reiterated that he had asked Zuma to present his version of events, which he has declined to do.

Zuma has made it clear that he does not believe that he is implicated in any testimony given at the commission.