Jordaan ‘asked Guptas for $10 million’
SAFA president Danny Jordaan allegedly turned to the Gupta family to cover a $10 million (R138 million) hole in the organisation’s books — the result of an illegal payment made to an official of international football governing body Fifa to secure South Africa the 2010 World Cup.
This extraordinary allegation is contained in an affidavit by the football association’s former chief executive officer (CEO), Leslie Sedibe. He has laid criminal charges against Jordaan and Fifa’s former secretary-general, Jérôme Valcke, for fraud and corruption, accusing the two of conspiring to authorise a $10 million bribe to Fifa’s then vice-president, Jack Warner, to secure his vote for South Africa to host the 2010 soccer spectacle.
The case was opened at the Mondeor police station in Johannesburg just days before Christmas, when Sedibe submitted tranches of documents — including the Safa Close Out Report on the 2010 Fifa World Cup — as evidence to support the corruption charges.
“The evidence I have submitted to assist the police is contained in documents that were handed to me by Safa in the course of our legal matter before the courts,” Sedibe told City Press.
But Safa’s current chief executive, Russell Paul, hit back, saying Jordaan “denies that allegation” that he approached the Guptas for money.
“But as for the rest of the allegations, government must speak on that,” added Paul.
“Government, through then-minister of Sport Fikile Mbalula, issued a directive that it would only be the state that would speak on the matter of the $10 million bribe allegation. As far as we know, that position has not changed, so we will not be responding on the matter.
“I must remind you that Safa and Dr Jordaan were cleared by Fifa for any wrongdoing in the investigation.”
Sedibe has asked the police, the Hawks and the National Prosecuting Authority — with the assistance of the FBI — to investigate a number of allegations, including:
Bribery and corruption allegations against Jordaan, Valcke and Fifa relating to the $10 million payment as a bribe to Warner; and
Whether the South African government made any payment equal to the sum of $10 million to Safa, or anyone else, to make up the shortfall on the budget for the 2010 Fifa World Cup in the period after the World Cup.
In his affidavit, Sedibe unpacks the sequence of events, claiming that he had been sent from pillar to post while trying to secure funding to prepare Bafana Bafana ahead of the 2010 World Cup because Safa was broke and in disarray.
“Jordaan then arranged a meeting with Ajay Gupta. The meeting was held at Mr Gupta’s house in Saxonwold with the former president, Jacob Zuma, in attendance,” he alleged.
“It was on this occasion that I met Mr Gupta for the first time. Jordaan introduced me to Mr Gupta and recommended that I should deal with Mr Gupta as he was a very powerful and influential individual who had the ear of the president.”
— City Press.
“Jordaan then arranged a meeting with Ajay Gupta. The meeting was held at Mr Gupta’s house in Saxonwold with the former president, Jacob Zuma, in attendance.”