At least this time.
Durban businessman Roy Moodley — bust this week for allegedly trying to slip an official R100 to secure a seat close to President Jacob Zuma at yesterday’s presidential inauguration — has blamed his woes on a “jealous” plot by a cabal of Indian businessmen.
The wealthy Durbanite, who owns 50 racehorses, claimed a key plotter against him was Zuma benefactor Viv Reddy, whom he said was “threatened” by his relationship with the new president.
Moodley was arrested on Wednesday and later appeared in the Pretoria Magistrate’s Court on charges of bribery and corruption. He has not been asked to plead.
He told the Sunday Times that Reddy and other businessmen were plotting to bring him down.
The 55-year old said he would be attending yesterday’s inauguration ceremony as a “special guest”.
“The allegations are that I wanted to sit next to him. Obviously in a function like that, nobody can sit next to the president.”
The businessman claims his relationship with Zuma goes back 15 years. Zuma attended a birthday party hosted by Moodley and Reddy for King Goodwill Zwelithini at Sibaya Casino two years ago and his own rock ’n’ roll-themed bash at Durban’s Inkosi Albert Luthuli ICC last year where Moodley arrived at his surprise birthday party in the company of the Zulu monarch.
On his arrest earlier this week, Moodley said: “This is a plot by Indian businessmen like Vivian Reddy.
“I don’t know why he is trying to get popular using my name,” said Moodley.
Reddy, however dismissed Moodley’s claims as “immature, emotional and devoid of any truth”.
ANC national spokesman Jessie Duarte said the party believed very clearly that irrespective of what a person might have done for the ANC, the law must take its course.
Zuma’s spokesman, Zizi Kodwa, said: “Clearly if there is evidence undermining the rule of law... we must allow the police and the courts to make a recommendation.
“If he is found to be guilty then he must be punished.”