Angelo Agrizzi, former Bosasa chief operations officer joined 702's Bongani Bingwa in studio to talk about his use of the k-word and his testimony at the state capture commission.
He visited the Barney Mokgatle Foundation in Alexandra on Tuesday to hand over an R200,000 donation as part of an out-of-court settlement with the South African Human Rights Commission for his use of racist language.
Agrizzi was catapulted into the spotlight when he implicated former president Jacob Zuma, former minister Nomvula Mokonyane and others at the Zondo Commission earlier this year.
Agrizzi tells Bongani Bingwa that he stayed at Bosasa because the company had a cult-like power.
You were convinced that what you were doing was right and for the benefit of the company. And I would say yes the company corrupted me. It is a progression, do the small things first, then do the bigger things. That it is how it progressed. Then it is: " I don't have time to count the money, can you do it please?"— Angelo Agrizzi, Former COO - Bosasa
He says he eventually started asking questions and the last three years has been a fight to unravel the whole truth.
As early as 2016, we had started with the process already. At one stage, I had left the company to start earlier, and I was unfortunately blindsided and walked back right into it with a golden hand-cuff. I was offered a retention agreement over a 10-year period, that I would come back and serve for a 10-year period for the group. The last offer on the table by Bosasa was R60 million. That is the price of silence, that is what you would pay to get it out of the media.— Angelo Agrizzi, Former COO - Bosasa
He says had he known what he knows now about whistleblowing, he would have collected a lot more information over a more extended period.
I would have had more substantive information for the commission, but unfortunately as circumstances had it, a lot of information was wiped, and I couldn't get to it. Everything was blocked as soon as I decided to go and blow the whistle.— Angelo Agrizzi, Former COO - Bosasa
Even though those Agrizzi implicated at the commission threatened to apply to cross-examine him none of those threats came to fruition.
The reason people don't want to cross-examine is that the rules of the commission are apparent that you must first testify then be cross-examined yourself before you can cross-examine anyone else.— Angelo Agrizzi, Former COO - Bosasa
When questioned as to what his response is to Zuma arguing that there was nothing said at the commission to implicate him, Agrizzi had this to say.
The facts are the facts, I went into the commission and told the truth and I didn't hold anything back. If Mr Zuma doesn't agree with what I said, he must come to the commission, I am well willing and able.— Angelo Agrizzi, Former COO - Bosasa
He says he worked for the salary he earned at Bosasa and he disclosed all that income and it is up to the courts as to whether he should pay the money back.
Agrizzi adds that he is very apologetic about calling black people looters who steal, rape and destroy.
I apologise again, it is not my view, and I apologised. I regret doing it. I think it was a combination of threats, a combination of audio recordings which were played to me where we were threatened. I have never used the threats as an excuse, I deeply regret what I said. I said it out of frustration and out of anger.— Angelo Agrizzi, Former COO - Bosasa
Listen below to the full interview: