Publication: Sapa Issued: Durban Date: 2004-10-27 Reporter: Sapa

Judge Willem Heath on New Shaik Witness List






Date 2004-10-27




Former head of the Heath investigative unit, Judge Willem Heath is one of the people the state is expected to call to the stand in the Schabir Shaik fraud and corruption trial in Durban.

Heath is on the state's revised witness list of 40 people, released on Wednesday.

Shaik who heads up Nkobi Holdings is alleged to have solicited a R500 000 per year bribe for Deputy President Jacob Zuma in return for protection from investigations into arms deal irregularities.

Spokesman for the National Prosecuting Authority, Sipho Ngwema said Heath was not included on the original list because at that time they had "not finalised our intention to call him".

The list also includes leader of the Independent Democrats Patricia de Lille, who first raised the issue of arms deal irregularities involving members of government in September 1999.

In November that year de Lille handed information to Judge Heath who was charged with investigating corruption in government structures at the time.

Heath wanted President Thabo Mbeki to proclaim an investigation into the multi-billion rand arms deal, but was later excluded from the investigation by the National Director of Public Prosecutions, the Auditor General and the Public Protector.

Also on the list is opposition MP Gavin Woods, who quit as head of Parliament's standing committee on public accounts in 2002 in protest at what he said was ANC interference in the committee's handling of the arms deal.

Pierre Moynot, the former director of arms company Thomson-CSF (Africa) which was an Nkobi business partner, will be called to testify.

Also to take the stand is the financial director of Nkobi Holdings, Colin Isaacs, and Scottish professor, John Lennon, who got Zuma's endorsement for the opening of a tourism school and was allegedly encouraged by Zuma to include Nkobi in the project.

With acknowledgement to Sapa.