NO HANKY-PANKY: The Cosatu investment arm, Kopano Ke Matla, stands by the federation’s claim there was no e-tolling issue when construction company Raubex won a contract to build a Gauteng highway. Picture: SAPA
Cosatu investment arm Kopano Ke Matla has stood by the union federation secretary-general’s claims that there was no e-tolling issue when construction company Raubex got a tender to build a Gauteng highway.
Zwelinzima Vavi was responding to reports that Cosatu was secretly benefiting from Raubex, while also piling pressure on the government to ban the e-tolling system.
Prabir Badal, chairperson of Kopano Ke Matla, denied media reports that Kopano Ke Matla had a 3% shareholding in Raubex. He said the company owned a 24% stake in Matlapeng Holdings, a partner of Raubex.
“I don’t know why people are sensationalising this matter without verifying the facts about the links of these entities,” Badal said.
Raubex won a tender in early 2000 and the issue of e-tolling was not even being considered at that time. The tender was awarded by the South African National Roads Agency Limited (Sanral) for the upgrading of the R21 road between Pretoria and OR Tambo International Airport, which Raubex carried out.
“Raubex built the road and at that time we did not know that it would be e-tolled,” Badal said. “Raubex will continue building roads despite a public outcry over its links with Cosatu.”
Asked about the tender documents, Badal undertook to respond at a later stage after getting enough information and referred further enquiries to Kopano Ke Matla CEO and chairperson of Raubex Collin Matjila. Matjila was not immediately available for comment.
According to media reports, Raubex got R800m for the highway upgrading tender, meaning Kopano Ke Matla raked in R24m by virtue of its 3% shareholding in the construction company.