A STATE witness in the bribery and corruption trial involving Durban- based textbook suppliers to the Eastern Cape Education Department has admitted to a litany of lies in various statements in the trial.
State witness Masia Mashapa has been giving evidence in the East London Regional Court in the trial of Durban businessman Vishal Seebran and co-accused Sibongile Mtshixa and Peter Mkhanda.
The three were charged after a sting operation involving members of the Hawks and then Education Department superintendent-general Modidima Mannya, during which, the state alleges, Seebran offered Mannya R600000 for every R10-million worth of tenders he pushed to the associate companies.
Mtshixa was part of the discussion during the Hawks sting, while Mkhanda was with Mashapa when Seebran allegedly paid Mashapa a R140000 facilitation fee.
During this week's court hearing, Seebran's legal counsel, Kemp J Kemp, grilled Mashapa on alleged inconsistencies in police statements made by himself and Mannya, as well as their respective testimonies in court.
He said similarities in Mannya's two affidavits and Mashapa's first statement suggested the two men had planned what they were going to say to the police.
Mashapa said money was one of the reasons he had been involved in the process leading up to the sting.
He said Mannya had undertaken consulting work for him in 2003 but he had not paid him the R100000 they had agreed. He paid Mannya R40000 in November 2010. He followed this up with a payment of R45000 after he was paid by Seebran for setting up the meeting with Mannya which led to the sting.