IEC says lease open for scrutiny
Johannesburg - The lease agreement between the Independent Electoral Commission and its new landlord in Centurion was open for public scrutiny, the IEC said on Tuesday.
"We would co-operate fully with the office of the public protector," said Pansy Tlakula, chief electoral officer.
The IEC was reacting to reports that United Democratic Movement leader Bantu Holomisa had requested the public protector to investigate the lease agreement the IEC entered into with its current landlord.
Tlakula said Holomisa or the office of the public protector had not been in contact with the IEC in this regard.
"But should their investigation proceed, we would co-operate fully with the office of the public protector."
She said that in the interest of transparency Holomisa and the media were also welcome to look at the documents.
The IEC said it required new and more spacious accommodation since the building in Sunnyside was over-occupied to such an extent that ablution facilities could not cope and this posed a health hazard.
In addition it had to rent outside accommodation for meetings as even corridors were used as office space.
Tlakula said the IEC vacated the Sunnyside offices and moved into the Centurion offices on 13 September 2010.
There was an overlap of rental payments for 18 days for the new and old buildings.
The IEC said the need for new accommodation was widely advertised in the press.
The requirements and criteria to be used in deciding the matter were part of the public advertisement, except the 90% price and 10% BEE preference, as prescribed in the Preferential Procurement Policy Framework Act.
Tlakula said the prescripts were, however, correctly applied and that the IEC accepted the highest scoring bid that met the advertised requirements.