How Zuma’s Son Landed R18m Dubai Apartment
Leaked e-mails have revealed that President Jacob Zuma’s son Duduzane Zuma bought his multi-million rand with the help of the Guptas.
Duduzane who is a shareholder in some of the Gupta-owned companies, purchased an apartment worth AED 5‚000‚000‚ equivalent to R17‚789‚162 at the iconic skyscraper Burj Khalifa building in Dubai at the end of 2015.
This came a few months before a letter which was making the rounds suggested that the Zumas’ appeared to be seeking residency in the United Arab Emirates, a claim which the president denied.
According to The Sunday Times, there was an apparent plan to relocate Zuma and his family to the UAE. The plan included a letter prepared for Jacob Zuma requesting residency in Dubai.
Earlier last year, two draft letters circulated from Tony Gupta to Sahara CEO Ashu Chawla and finally to Duduzane with the subject: “JZ letter to Crown Prince AUH” and “JZ letter to Sheikh Mohammed”. The letters show that Zuma has plans of making Dubai his home in the future.
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Again, controversial leaked e-mails show that Duduzane, bought an apartment at Burj Khalifa ( the tallest building in the world) worth almost R18m. He reportedly pulled this off through the help of one of the companies he co-owns with the Guptas‚ Wens Holdings Limited.
The 175.40 square metres apartment was acquired in December 2015 with a deposit equivalent to R1‚778‚916.
While Duduzane Zuma is yet to comment on these findings, e-mail trails between Oakbay’s now acting CEO Ronica Ragavan and international real estate agency Knight Frank’s senior negotiator Gregory Lewis reveal details of the negotiations since October 2015.
An e-mail from Lewis to Ragavan reads:
“Please find attached a copy of the signed contract for the Burj Khalifa apartment. Following on from last week’s and yesterday’s correspondences‚ please confirm when the 10% deposit shall be lodged via managers cheque or directly into the conveyancer’s escrow account.”
In addition, Lewis also informed Tony Gupta via e-mail that all the paperwork for the property (apartment 6011) should be ready by the time Duduzane landed in Dubai.
“I am now pushing for the buyers to sort giving POA (Power of Attorney) to their lawyer. This has been agreed but the papers need to be sorted. Should be done by the time Duduzane arrives,” said Lewis at the time.
All these were going on in October 2015, and by December 2015, Ragavan confirmed to Lewis that Duduzane was in Dubai to complete the transaction. Subsequently, documents show that Duduzane Zuma completed the transaction with his initials and signature in December in Wens Holdings Limited’s name.
Meanwhile, the Guptas attorney, Gert Van der Merwe is expected to comment on the matter after meeting with the family on Tuesday.