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The real cost of graft and corruption to SA's people

02 July 2013, 13:36

Regrettably I have to preface my article with a few points, since I can be sure someone will play a race card in the comments. "You wrote it because you are racist" or "Corruption happened because the ruling party is black." Fairly so my figures will also be questioned.

 1. I do not subscribe to any political party. Come Election Day I will vote. Apathy is a slap in the face to those who fought, and gave their lives for everyone’s freedom to vote. If you are able, and do not vote shame on you.

 2. I know there was corruption pre 1994. They are a dead regime. I am addressing the regime that is plundering now, in the present.

 3. Corruption is not a crime based on skin colour. This is not a black/white issue.

 4. Costs reflected in this piece are obtained from actual construction costs of recent completed projects both in the public and private sector. Bear in mind that public construction figures are possibly inflated by graft and corruption.

 With the preliminaries over let me get started.

 Figures released by Corruption Watch this year estimate that an estimated 675 Billion Rand has been lost to graft and corruption since 1994.

What is that in real terms? What has actually been stolen from the citizens of South Africa?

Written out is it looks like this : 675 000 000 000

If we take the cost of an RDP home at R 54 000.00, that money could have bought 12 500 000 Homes. That is a lot of stolen homes.  This is a number, substantially higher, than the number of homeless people living in South Africa today.

A 760 bed hospital can be constructed for 1.5 Billion Rand. For the money stolen 450 of these hospitals could have been constructed. That is 252 000 hospital beds stolen from the people.

A primary care clinic can be constructed for 4 Million Rand. That is 168 750 clinics stolen from the people. Each clinic could see 20 000 patients a year. We only have about 4 200 clinics in South Africa now.

A school catering for 1 200 learners can be constructed for 40 Million Rand. This equates to 16 875 schools stolen from the people of South Africa. How meaningful would these projects be to the youth of the South African population?

2.4 Billion Rand can construct a wind farm large enough to provide electricity to 97 000 homes. 281 of these farms could be constructed for the money stolen. This is enough power for 27 257 000 homes, stolen. Load shedding would no longer be required and we would have enough power for a lot of future growth.

At the inflated cost of 20 Billion we have the Gauteng Freeway Improvement Project. A total of 560 km of roads was improved.  For the money stolen we could have improved an additional 18 340 km over and above what was improved.. Why are we paying E-Tolls? 

When you look at it though, it is not just the infrastructure that was stolen. The jobs that would have been created are stolen too. The money spent there would have come back into the economy stimulating growth. Some of that income would have been gained back to the state coffers in taxation. It could have gone even further funding more for the citizens of South Africa.

The latest information suggests that Nkandla cost the people of South Africa 206 Million Rand. Thank you, Mister President for robbing your citizens of 51 Primary Health Care Clinics or Five Schools and one clinic.

We the people of South Africa deserve much better than we are getting. I am not saying don't vote ANC. What I am saying is make them accountable and consider carefully where you put your cross next year. It will be in the nation’s collective interest to let the rot stop.

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