Land grants valued at R699m probed - SIU

2013-10-21 17:59

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Johannesburg - About 60 land grants collectively worth R699m have been probed by the Special Investigating Unit (SIU) since 2011, it said in its annual report.

The SIU said it started investigating allegations of irregularities in the awarding and administration of grants under the department of rural development's land reform programme in March 2011.

The investigation was expected to end in March next year.

"The SIU team has to date collected, scanned and reviewed several thousand documents and since the start of the investigation, obtained affidavits from more than 3 000 individuals," it said in the report.

The SIU had found that, in certain instances, there were inflated numbers for beneficiaries.

It also discovered 636 fake beneficiaries.

The SIU found that documentation was forged, there were allegations of bribery, and that previous owners of farms had not vacated the property after it had been bought by the department on behalf of the beneficiaries.

"Three matters were referred to the National Prosecuting Authority for the institution of criminal prosecution against both... [department] officials and external parties in KwaZulu-Natal," the SIU said.

"Three accused are currently before court on charges relating to fraud."

Update progress

It said a further seven cases were referred to the police.

"The total amount involved in these seven criminal cases is in excess of R96.6m in fraudulent grants."

The SIU handed over 12 reports to the department with recommendations to institute disciplinary action in 11 cases.

"To date, two officials have been dismissed with a number of further disciplinary proceedings about to commence or... [be] instituted."

The Democratic Alliance said on Monday it would write to Rural Development Minister Gugile Nkwinti to request an update on the progress of the cases.

"Land reform is a vital cog in government’s efforts to redress the legacy of apartheid. All those guilty of defrauding land reform beneficiaries must face the full might of the law," DA MP Mpowele Swathe said in a statement,

"In unequivocal support of land reform, the DA will continue to monitor government’s progress with land reform to ensure that it truly promotes economic inclusion, lifts people out of poverty and supports growth and prosperity in the agricultural sector."

Read more on:    siu  |  gugile nkwinti  |  land

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

How much food do you need to concentrate?

We have been taught that we need three meals a day in order to make it through the day and while most of us indulge in more than our fair share there is a large portion of South Africans who are living off barely enough to sustain them.


Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.