Former head of State Protocol Bruce Koloane said that he wanted to impress the Indian High Commissioner, which is why he put pressure on SA National Defence Force officials to authorise the Guptas landing a privately chartered aircraft at Waterkloof Air Force Base.
Koloane was testifying at the state capture commission of inquiry where he admitted to so-called name dropping but only after recordings of his conversations were submitted as evidence.
He pleaded guilty to three internal disciplinary charges in 2013 and was suspended without pay for two months and given a final written warning before being appointed as South Africa’s ambassador to the Netherlands.
After admitting to abusing the names of several politicians, including former President Jacob Zuma to have the Gupta jet landing authorised, Koloane was asked why he did it, particularly at the behest of the Indian High Commissioner.
The ambassador insists he gained nothing personally from the interventions, which he claimed to deeply regret.
However, he confirmed that as ambassador to the Netherlands, he set up business meetings for the Guptas in that country and also introduced business people to the family.