Home affairs corruption 'endemic'

2009-09-15 17:12

Cape Town - Corruption is endemic at home affairs, deputy director-general Vusi Mkhize said on Tuesday.

He was responding to a question posed at a parliamentary media briefing on how widespread corruption was in his department.

"I think the issue of corruption... and the department has not shied away from the problem, it is just generally an endemic problem.

"[We] have... a situation where, constantly, throughout the years, it has become an entrenched culture to solicit bribes [and] to solicit any other untoward mechanisms," he told journalists.

Societal problem

The influence of criminal syndicates was a long-standing problem that the department was doing everything it could to root out, Mkhize said.

Society in general was suffering from moral decay and a "lack of concern about doing work honestly with integrity".

Home affairs officials were part of this society too, he said.

"It takes someone outside to grease the palm of someone inside the department."

Mkhize said there was a need for a "holistic approach" towards dealing with corruption.

"In a nutshell, we do have a challenge, but the impression is sometimes created [that] all home affairs officials are corrupt.

"This is really not true. We do have people who are corrupt, but there are [people who toil]... and do their work as honestly as possible," he said.