JOHANNESBURG (AP) — An embattled South African businessman mired in corruption allegations died in a fatal car crash on Monday in Johannesburg near O.R. Tambo International Airport, police said Tuesday.
Gavin Watson, CEO of services company African Global Holdings, formerly Bosasa, was a former anti-apartheid activist who emerged as a key figure in an ongoing high-profile inquiry into state corruption that has gripped South Africa.
A former colleague accused Watson of being part of a network of alleged corruption and bribery of officials to earn lucrative state contracts for the company. Watson had not yet appeared before the commission of inquiry.
The ruling African National Congress lauded Watson for his activism during the liberation struggle, saying he “fought side by side with many compatriots against apartheid.”
Watson was reportedly driving near the airport when he appeared to lose control of his car and collide with a concrete pillar, police said.
The cause of the accident was still being investigated on Tuesday, police said, adding that there was “no evidence at this stage of the investigation that suggests foul play.”
Watson’s family has called for an independent investigation into the accident, according to local media reports.