Gijima ‘confident’ before Madonsela’s probe

2012-01-23 15:07

Listed IT company Gijima today said it was “confident” that Public Protector Thuli Madonsela would discover “nothing untoward” during her probe into a multibillion-rand home affairs tender.

Gijima reacted on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange’s news service Sens after City Press yesterday revealed that Madonsela was scrutinising the R2.4 billion Who Am I Online tender.

The tender was awarded by the home affairs department to Gijima in 2007 at a price tag of R1.9 billion. The cost of the project increased to R4.5 billion before it was cancelled by Home Affairs Minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma in 2010.The parties settled last year and the tender’s value was adjusted to R2.4 billion.

Madonsela confirmed that her probe would include possible conflicts of interest. Gijima chief executive Jonas Bogoshi was a senior executive at the State Information Technology Agency (Sita) when it recommended Gijima for the tender.

The board of Gijima, chaired by businessman Robert Gumede, said today it learnt via City Press of Madonsela’s probe.

“The R2.3 billion contract awarded to Gijima by the department of home affairs in 2007 was for the modernisation of the IT infrastructure and systems of the department. This included the re-engineering and digitisation of most of the national population register, including birth and death certificates, processing of ID and passport applications, visa and other permit applications as well as enhanced movement control for South Africans and foreigners at the country’s borders,” according to the company’s statement.

“This matter has already been settled between Gijima and (home affairs) in 2011, and all issues relating to the contract have already been aired. The board is confident that nothing untoward will be discovered.

“Gijima and its board will cooperate with the investigation in a transparent and truthful manner. Gijima is confident that the public protector’s investigation will exonerate both the company and its CEO,” the statement read.

Bloomberg reported that Gijima’s share price fell the most in a month today. “The stock declined as much as 6.3% to 60 cents, the biggest drop on a closing-price basis since December 22.”

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