Sunday, February 22, 2004

Follow the money

Remember the 270 foreign weasels who Saddam was paying off under the "Oil for Food" program? It didn't get too much play in the USA since it was an "incovenient" story for the media leftoids. But the foreign press has been following up on some of their local bigs who were on the list. Here's one from South Africa featuring the pompous thugs at the African National Congress - Shady Iraq oil deals: The ANC connection
Top brass flew to Baghdad with publicity-shy empowerment businessman

Two of the ANC's most powerful officials travelled to Iraq with a controversial Johannesburg businessman just weeks before he landed a R1.2-billion state oil deal.

Sandi Majali is one of about 270 people around the world who have been named in an alleged sanctions-busting scam involving oil from former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein's regime.

The names appeared in Iraqi State Oil Marketing Organisation documents found after the fall of Saddam.

Majali, 41, who heads the media-shy empowerment company Imvume Resources, has for the past two weeks been reluctant to talk about his business dealings.

Barry Aaron, an attorney acting for Imvume and Majali, said his clients were precluded by a pending lawsuit from responding to questions.

The Sunday Times has established that Majali had close ties with former Iraqi Deputy Prime Minister Tariq Aziz and senior members of the ANC.

Majali accompanied ANC secretary-general Kgalema Motlanthe and the party's treasurer-general, Mendi Msimang, to the Middle East from November 9 to 17 2001. Just two weeks later, on December 1, the Iraqi government allocated Majali's company two million barrels of oil.

On December 5 2001, South Africa's Strategic Fuel Fund put out a R1.2-billion tender for four million barrels of Basrah Light oil. Majali's company snatched the deal.
Running an "empowerment" business sounds like a good gig! I wonder how you start one up?
The Sunday Times has uncovered several overseas trips on which Majali accompanied Motlanthe and Msimang. Imvume also paid a R40 000 bill in July 2002 for the ANC to host a dinner in Johannesburg for Aziz, who was in South Africa as a special guest of Deputy President Jacob Zuma.

Msimang said this week that the ANC had not helped Majali broker the oil deal and said there was "no special relationship" between them.

Msimang also said that Majali, "like all those who have the interests of the country at heart", had made "contributions" to the ANC, although Motlanthe denied any knowledge of any such contributions.

The Sunday Times has established that Imvume is owned by "charitable" trusts and unnamed businessmen.

One of the owners is the Research and Security Development Trust, founded in June 2001 with a symbolic donation of R1 000 from Daniel Lengosane - now a director of Internal Security in the President's Office.
I believe that is called "splitting up the loot". Kind of gives a new perspective to all that South African "holier than thou" whining about the USA picking on poor widdle Saddy, doesn't it?

But don't worry, the ANC politicos have an explanation for all their trips to Iraq:
Motlanthe this week confirmed that he had accompanied Majali to Iraq at least twice. "My job as the ANC secretary-general is to do party-to-party negotiations to strengthen our relationships with other parties.

"We had a good relationship with the Baath party in Iraq."
An understatement.