SIU probes staggering corruption cases

2011-03-30 23:42

Cape Town - The special investigating unit (SIU) has been inundated with new cases revealing staggering corruption in the police, the public broadcaster, the land reform and housing subsidy systems, state departments and municipalities, MPs heard on Wednesday.

SIU head Willie Hofmeyr told Parliament's portfolio committee on justice: "We have received a flood of new cases. Some of them are very big."

He outlined 16 new proclamations received by the anti-graft unit in the past financial year, the most ever in its 15-year history, before commenting wryly that "few professionals in South Africa are honest".

The SIU was investigating the entire procurement chain in the public works department and had so far found that R35m was paid to entities in which officials had undeclared business interests.

The probe also found that an official had signed a lease for a residential property in Pretoria for R217 000 a month without the relevant approval, Hofmeyr said, stressing that it was "a single house, a big and expensive house but just one house".

The contract value to date exceeded R7m.

Serious criminality

SIU investigators have also found that the police's procurement process for the building or renovating of 33 police stations to the tune of R330m was deeply flawed.

Hofmeyr said at several stations the work was not put out to tender but contracts were instead awarded on what he facetiously called a "three quote" system.

"You have one quote for the desks and another quote for half the bricks, and another quote for the other half of the bricks. It is not, I think, a very desirable system."

The probe was focusing on Pienaar, Hazyview, Brighton Beach and eSikhawini police stations and had also found BEE fronting and instances where SAPS officials had interests in the contracted companies.

The longest-running project on the SIU's plate, its investigation into public housing corruption, has shown that at least half of all projects undertaken by the department of human settlements were "problematic in some way".

Investigators were probing contracts worth R2bn. Contractors were being paid for houses which did not exist at all, were extensively incomplete, seriously defective or fewer than the number agreed upon.

Hofmeyr said the SIU's probe into the cash-strapped SABC had uncovered "serious criminality" with R2.4bn paid out to businesses in which 20 company employees held interests between 2007 and 2010.

The unit opened eight criminal cases against staff members of which five had been finalised and handed to the National Prosecuting Authority.

Hofmeyr said the unit not only uncovered extensive corruption in the Tshwane and Ekurhuleni metros but had been asked by the national government to investigate all 23 municipalities in North West province.

In Tshwane, it found that 65 officials had interests in companies doing business with the metro that had received payments totalling R185m between 2007 and 2010.

Officials colluded with service providers, paid them for work that was not done and tampered with tender specifications.

At Ekurhuleni, "a number of people are in the process of being dismissed" for wrongdoing that included a director signing off on invoices to the value of R12.4m for services that were not delivered.

Endemic abuse

Hofmeyr said it was heartening that government departments were increasingly calling on the SIU to probe endemic abuse and noted that the department of land reform and rural development had asked it to scrutinise the entire land reform process.

He was expecting it to ask that the unit do the same on the land restitution system.

The land reform investigation saw the SIU conduct its biggest ever data swoop, with investigators effectively seizing more than 50 million documents to track fraudulent or irregular awarding of grants and funds.

With the help of the Hawks and the Asset Forfeiture Unit, the SIU has seized farms and assets in KwaZulu-Natal worth R50m and brought fraud and corruption charges against a businessman and three officials from the department.

In another new probe, the department of arts and culture was found to have incurred unauthorised expenditure of R42m related to the 2010 FIFA World Cup

Hofmeyr trod carefully on questions relating to the Public Protector's report on the R500m contract for the police's new headquarters in Pretoria, in which she found that the deal was fatally flawed and fingered national police commissioner Bheki Cele as the organisation's chief accounting officer.

But he conceded that on occasion the SIU had been "crippled" by the lack of co-operation from accounting officers, and like the protector, suggested that Treasury should step in.

"The public protector's solution was that Treasury should look at it and take the necessary steps, which may mean persuading the accounting officer to do it ... they carry a lot of persuasive value."

  • White_Rhino - 2011-03-31 00:02

    And this ladies and gentleman is only the tip of the ice berg. We desperately need good accountable governance. South Africa is on life support. We need to act NOW. If this doesn't open your eyes nothing will. Vote DA !!

      anna - 2011-03-31 07:30

      Do you really believe that "they" would allow themselves to be voted out? This is the same reason why all the despots and their trough buddies in the rest of Africa NEVER leave office when voted out.Let's be honest would you just give up all the bling?......... These are the early days of a dictatorial one party state, corruption and a dysfunctional state are early symptoms. The only solution for anyone who wants a better life for themselves and their family is to leave this country,taking their skills,money and dynamism with them.....fighting a loosing battle here.

      ArtGee - 2011-03-31 07:54

      I believe they broke into the Union Buildings last night and stole the Local Govt Election RESULTS due to take plasce on the 18th of May!

      Francois - 2011-03-31 09:20

      White Rhino, don't you think that apart from using the power of the ballot box, Willie must get the money back? At present the system is: I stole R 10 million and got fired and now I am going to retire or I stole R500k and was appointed as President of the country, or I helped Old Habits Mugabe to steal an election in 2002 and now I am a special envoy in the Sudan. What I about - I stole and now I have to see my body to the Vietnam Rats in Pollsmoore Prison to get food and a hand out to pay for my 4 wives and 26 (and still counting) children? Then Prison corruption may also end!

      Grant - 2011-03-31 09:46

      The very thought that the DA is gaining voters and is growing stronger must be causing many sleepness nights in the top echelons of the ANC. The deperation is showing, they can't allow the DA to get stronger because more and more skeletons will be uncovered. Correctional services need to start building a lot more prisons to house all these criminals.

      jaycee - 2011-03-31 11:11

      And if the government wants to stop the spread of corruption and mismanagement, it will have to act VERY soon. Time is running out, the money box is getting empty very fast and soon SA might just be another African statistic. For those whites who can emigrate to greener fields, I would suggest that they keep such an opportunity in mind. I mean, why try and make a living in a country where the government kicks you in the teeth - patriotism be damned!

      Meanleader - 2011-03-31 16:29

      Sounds like the soap Opera " Days of our lives " , and sadly , these ARE the days of our lives !!!!!!!!!! How the beautifull country once known as South Africa has been raped and plundered .What a sin ! Surely something is going to happen to change all this !

  • Vuzi - 2011-03-31 00:16

    God took Israel out of Egypt in a week, but it took 40 years to take Egypt out of Israel. In fact, He could not. He had to let the whole lot die in the desert and try again with their children. 40 years. And then the giants, and the philistines. In 40 years a train trip from Joz to Cape town will cost 650 Yuan, and you must submit your paperwork to the party chief 24 months in advance. Thursdays will be special, then you will get half a cup of beans with your cup of rice. You will look forward to Thursdays all week. It will be the best day of the week, Thursdays, 40 years from now.

      laageen - 2011-03-31 00:44

      Vuzi, loved your comment. Only thing is that the train will stop at Colesberg. Border control will be very strict.

  • SimonP - 2011-03-31 00:16

    Surprise surprise! Anu ANC supporter care to comment?

      Mr D - 2011-03-31 01:44

      are u freeking nuts they are busy counting the money

      Slapper - 2011-03-31 06:47

      Eish, Leave us alone to make money while we can, where we can and how we can. We are not well educated, so our opportunities to get rich are limited.

  • Benzo - 2011-03-31 00:39

    If breach of trust becomes a common practice in a society, that society is self destructive. I do hope that SA has enough back boned people left to withstand the temptation of easy money.

  • Mike - 2011-03-31 01:21

    Will there now be the predictable silence from all the usual ANC apologists, or will this be blamed on apartheid as well. Perhaps the investigation been taken out of context? The mindless masses will continue, however, to vote these idiots into power and get the government they fully deserve. VIVA!

      phillie - 2011-03-31 01:41

      Unluckily we are the cannon fodder on which they feed.

  • henni5909 - 2011-03-31 01:47

    all of this means nothing if the guilty parties get away with it, eg. Saambou bank fraud and winnie mandela, found guilty but in parliament now. These people steal from all South Africans, make all poorer.

  • braveinternetguy - 2011-03-31 02:50

    Countrymen, we have to save our country! It' really becoming a gravely serious issue now, and a lot of damage has already been done. They are robbing us around every turn and corner, at every opportunity, without shame, without guilt. Everything is becoming more and more expensive because of their wasteful mismanagement and their greedy self-enrichment. Everything is breaking or falling apart around us. Madmen and warmongers are left to roam freely and spread their vile rhetoric, gather supporters desparate for a sense of direction, belonging and purpose, and to threaten what little remains of the sanity and safety we have. WE have had many opportunities to change for the better, the SWC the most recent, yet the ANC government not only squanders these, but also bite the hand that feeds in the process. We still have a few opportunities left to turn things around, and the rescue our beloved country. STOP THE RACIST AND CRIMINAL ANC GOVERNMENT FROM DESTROYING SOUTH AFRICA ANY FURTHER! STOP THEM FROM CAUSING ANY FURHTER POVERTY! VOTE THEM OUT!

  • resiststance - 2011-03-31 04:25

    "few professionals in South Africa are honest" - They seem a bit confused here, all the examples they list are public sector and not professionals at all. There are plenty of real professionals that are honest, although the government is chasing us away at an alarming rate.

  • frikdt - 2011-03-31 05:14

    Oh, George Orwell, what a brilliant mind you had! The Seven Commandments are laws that were supposed to keep order and ensure elementary Animalism within Animal Farm. The Seven Commandments were designed to unite the animals together against the humans and prevent animals from following the humans' evil habits. Since not all of the animals can remember them, they are boiled down into one basic statement: "Four legs good, two legs bad!" (with wings counting as legs for this purpose, Snowball arguing that wings count as legs as they are objects of propulsion rather than manipulation), which the sheep constantly repeat, distracting the crowd from the lies of the pigs. The original commandments were: 1. Whatever goes upon two legs is an enemy. 2. Whatever goes upon four legs, or has wings, is a friend. 3. No animal shall wear clothes. 4. No animal shall sleep in a bed. 5. No animal shall drink alcohol. 6. No animal shall kill any other animal. 7. All animals are equal. Later, Napoleon and his pigs are corrupted by the absolute power they hold over the farm. To maintain their popularity with the other animals, Squealer secretly paints additions to some commandments to benefit the pigs while keeping them free of accusations of breaking the laws (such as "No animal shall drink alcohol" having "to excess" appended to it and "No animal shall sleep in a bed" with "with sheets" added to it). The changed commandments are as follows, with the changes bolded: 1. No animal shall sleep in a bed with sheets. 2. No animal shall drink alcohol to excess. 3. No animal shall kill any other animal without cause. Eventually the laws are replaced with "All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others", and "Four legs good, two legs better!"

  • Hungwe - 2011-03-31 05:27


  • duncan - 2011-03-31 05:39

    Friends laughed when I estimated R100 million per DAY was being stolen. Now I thinks it's more ?

  • Stuartthom - 2011-03-31 05:59

    This is the African way - its in our culture

  • paulf - 2011-03-31 06:06

    There is a saying that if the top is corrupt it will filter down. How the people can vote for a President that is a criminal is beyond me. The only way forward is to Vote them out of power and see that they are investigated and charged for their deeds. Worst of all they preach to the masses about corruption and crime yet they are involved. They do not set any example to anyone. The example they are setting is you can steal, you can murder, peverty is okay etc. My 2 cents.

  • Shisstirrer QBE - 2011-03-31 06:19

    So what happens once the corrupt have been fired ? will the next lot of tycoons be honest ? like hell , they have a culture of stealing .

      NzWenz - 2011-03-31 06:39

      whats new pussy cat wa wa wa

  • Hardtalk - 2011-03-31 06:44

    You got to admit pre 1994 did not have a patch on this lot. Of cause it’s all down to the animal farm and it’s only when corruption cases dish out long prison sentences that they will get the message. It is always the same – suspended on full pay while being investigated – then under the carpet with closed ranks coming into play. The trouble is the idiots that do register and vote keep the rubbish in power, but we must feel sorry for them with all the suffering and hardship over the ten million years of apartheid.

  • - 2011-03-31 06:58

    The great pity is that most of these cases will not be seen or heard by most of the population as they do not have access to the media. In the case of the SABC, information will not be broadcast as it is government controlled.

  • Badballie - 2011-03-31 06:59

    Nothing surprises me in communist souf africa anymore, between a corrupt government and police force, anything "legal" has to be dissected and scrutinized before being believed, the biggest crime syndicate is the police force, to the few good men in the police force, I salute both of you.

  • marco - 2011-03-31 07:03

    Another very good reason to me never to return back and live in South Africa again.What kind of sick people do have out there in the Republic?This survey/probe was from the SIU not even from some wannabe hump hump newspaper tabloid.The country,South Africa,is shockingly immoral at best if this sort of behaviour by officials and highranking people in society can be going on and maintained.One really is embarrass by South Africa as a whole,even though it's certain elements within it's borders that does the K@K,and shame on you idiots and co for making the country look like K@K.

      julian - 2011-03-31 07:32

      Stay where you are Marco...its much better where you are...please dont come back. Please. Thanks

      Paradoks - 2011-03-31 07:51

      Stay where you are Marco. We do not like you, we do not want you here, not even for a holiday. Please do not even do SA things like braai, or go to Nandos. We absolutely beg you.

      Nero - 2011-03-31 08:10

      You've left the game so stop trying to play.

      HCO - 2011-03-31 08:33

      Please dont come back

      resiststance - 2011-03-31 08:54

      You people disgust me. You should be begging qualified people to come back and help not acting like spoilt little children that are hurt that someone broke up with them. If only it were people like you that left and the good ones that stayed behind instead of the other way around...

      Fred - 2011-03-31 09:29

      Sorry Marco, but with the replies to your comment you'll be able to notice how serious the brain drain is.

      Chris - 2011-03-31 11:09

      Marco please man don't even come for a holiday - which you plan for every year! I live happily in Cape Town – I’ve got it all…perfect city, perfect weather, good pals and awesome family that sticks like boere only can – I’m lucky to have the best Cape Town chick by my side! I’m blest with a challenging job and good income. I don’t own a million rand house, nor a 100 thousand rand car but I thank the good Lord every morning for me to walk my two feet on South African soil….please don’t make “overseas countries” think they are any better…coz it aint..and you know it best! You wake up there each morning! Enjoy the freezing cold nights and days! All of the best to you! a Castle cheers!

      resiststance - 2011-03-31 12:04

      @Chris: My what a small mind you have, where do you think your precious cape town in which you've "got it all" gets a large percentage of its money from. Tourism, many of whom are ex-pats, go ahead keep chasing tourists away and see how long you remain "blest". Grow up - I feel for the poor woman who actually puts up with you.

      Mike - 2011-03-31 13:03

      Very predictable anti-expat comments as usual. Don't you idiots know any other tunes? Marco, you are unfortunately quite right. There is no reason to go back. Chris, wake the hell up mate.

  • michaelp1 - 2011-03-31 07:33

    If morality could be measured on a Scale, the morality of this country is worse now then during the apartheid years - and we all know how immoral that was!! We're heading into a 'deep, very deep, black (no pun intended) hole.

  • zumalema - 2011-03-31 07:51

    TIA! Enjoy everyone.

  • Sword&Cross - 2011-03-31 08:02

    The Racist ANC MUST OUT and the extremely non-racist and effective opposition party take over and remedy all these matters IMMEDIATELY and THIS WILL DEMAND International Assistance from all thos countries that so readily helped rid SA from the apartheid racist regime, to rid SA from this black racist regime before it becomes as bad or worse than Zimbabwe. AVAAZ Where are you? United Nations - where are you? WHERE ARE ALL THE BODIES THAT SHOULD BE APPLYING STRENUOUS MEASURES AGAINST THE RACIST ANC.

  • citizen36M1 - 2011-03-31 08:13

    So, is this what the "struggle" was all about. What happened to the lofty ideals of freeing the masses from an oppressive apartheid regime and lifting them out of poverty and squalor? All I can see is another regime taking the opportunity to rob state coffers while the masses continue suffering? Is this not also oppressive? Is this not worse than the previous regime as it is being perpetrated by those who profess to have the very same masses' interests at heart!! The extent to which corruption has taken root in government departments and parastatals makes one sick to the stomach. Every year the Minister of Finance threatens taxpayers with all kinds of penalties and punishments for non-compliance while most of us dutifully comply with the tax legislation. What for?? So that a bunch of rogues deployed by the ANC can dip their grubby paws into the cookie jar!! Mr. Gordhan, can you still justify why the ANC should be in government?? Can you sleep at night knowing that you are associated with this sick bunch of thieves?? Your organisation is no better than the regimes of Libya, Egypt, and others - beware the backlash of the masses, which will eventually see through this scam that the ANC today calls a government! To the so-called Cabinet of Ministers - Shame and Damnation on the lot of you for allowing this to happen. I still remember the disgust I felt watching the cabinet CHEER the announcement of the disbanding of the Scorpions – now we know why! As for Zuma, it is not surprising that this would happen seeing that he refused to go on trial for corruption to clear his name... makes you think, doesn't it?? If we ever get to the situation where corruption in government is rooted out, taxes are properly managed for the betterment of all, and harmonious relations exist between labour and the private sector, it will probably be difficult to find a black man who ever voted for the ANC!!!

      paulf - 2011-03-31 08:30

      Well said there, I appreciate your post and the facts. It is all true!!!!

      K@K Praat? - 2011-03-31 13:07

      Thank YOU!!!!!!

      BilboBaggins - 2011-03-31 13:27

      Well said. The 'struggle' is now only about self-interest - the masses are once again left out in the cold. It is embarrassing to be a citizen of such a corrupt, immoral lot of thieves.

  • HCO - 2011-03-31 08:13

    Then you get these poor idiots that will vote ANC again,I say to their supporters -don't strike, dont't protest and dont complaine you deserve what you got A ROTTEN GOVERMANT!!!!.

  • Hein - 2011-03-31 08:22

    This again proves that the government accounting system is non-existent. You try ordering a packet of crayons in a big corparate industry - you're better off just buying it yourself. Yet, somehow, people in government have access to millions and can squander it away without anyone worrying about paper work or power of authority???

  • ji - 2011-03-31 08:53

    "SIU probes staggering corruption cases" , you only waking up now ??? what do you expect with the ANC in power .

  • The Observer - 2011-03-31 09:01

    We knew this. Not the details but the corruption. But good on the SIU, continue to catch these bugeers, eventually the ANC will have no people left as they will all be where they belong, in jail.

  • poorwhite - 2011-03-31 09:07

    YES.....How many of you complaining now voted this!!!!!! Who is sorry now! You can blame this all on apartheid!How do you expect people who never had anything to just be satisfied with 'something'. It is like letting children loose in a sweet shop and saying "please don't take all the sweets....just what you more!" ...and no-one to check on them.... Shame...I am sooooo sorry that apartheid was so bad for some of the blacks of SA.........look how you are suffering now.....shame!!

  • Totman - 2011-03-31 09:35

    The Receiver Of Revenue lost his legitimacy to collect taxes when all these monies does not get used for the reason collecting it. When a big part of it gets misused, stolen or just got missing. Remember the "dealer and stealer" story. You can't, on a mandate held up by the guilty ones, collect monies when they are the main culprits. If it was an individual or company they would have been guilty under some laws like conspiracy.

  • Fred - 2011-03-31 09:35

    Sadly the results of all this theft and corruption hurts the poorest of people much harder than it hurts the tax payer or big businesses, what we need is an opposition party who can get the message across to the masses, unluckily overfed, stinking rich whiteys aren't the answer, we need a party that the people can relate to and who relate to the people, that just doesn't exist at the moment.

  • Koos - 2011-03-31 09:52

    Is there anybody in all forms of goverment that is not corrupt? I think that each and every goverment employee or minister should be screened to evaluate their honesty and if they can perform the job that is expected of them.

  • Douglas Hendry - 2011-03-31 11:06

    At the end of the day, when all the investigations have taken place, and all the reports have been completed, who is going to actually DO something. Words, written or spoken, are all well and good, but its actions that count. Fire incompetents, take criminal action against fraudsters, and confiscate all assets that have been obtained using OUR money.

  • maseratifitt - 2011-03-31 13:20

    Like I said: Timing is everything. Watch out for spectacular ANC "successes" leading up to 18 May 2011.

  • BilboBaggins - 2011-03-31 13:21

    The greed is beyond belief. Let it go on because it cannot be stopped as the rot is right from the top to the bottom. We'll see what happens when the piggy bank is empty. You cannot vote the ANC out so the only option is to leave rather go down with the stinking, sinking ship. What a joke!

  • soupy - 2011-03-31 14:34

    This 'investigating' reminds me of the deck-chair arranging on the Titanic. The ANC could well go down the same way as governments in the North of Africa.

  • Sword&Cross - 2011-04-02 08:54

    Border Post and Home Affairs CORRUPTION:- How can criminally corrupt 'Nelson Mavie' be allowed to enter and work and live in SA on a 30 day tourist visa for a year and a half in Gauteng & Soweto. WHO IS PAYING WHOM, and whose job has he removed from a South African.

  • pierre.hough1 - 2011-07-10 17:17

    That's the political dividend the ANC has brought! As if that is not enough, they want to nationalize mines, banks and farms. And we have a President who warns judges not to interfere. It is a disgrace .... the kind wars are made of.

  • Tinus - 2011-07-13 11:12

    Okay, it would be nice to think that Zuma's so-called fight against corruption could succeed once Zuma himself - and his ANC leaders - get the boot. But it's no use pruning the leaves while the bulb continues to flourish underground... The bulb in this case is bigger than the ANC, for our society has become rotten to the core. At the heart of the rot is a wholesale rejection of God.

  • KarinWalker - 2011-10-12 23:46

    64 THOUSAND cvil servants have been found to have "illegally /fraudulently accessed" state grants!(STOLE!!) Have they been fired???NO!! they are allowed to pay back the stolen amounts, ( without interest) and keep their jobs! And Zuma talks about getting tough on corruption! What a joke! This is the twit who received about R2 million in back handers from Shabby Shaik and apparently asked for a R500 000 a year bribe from an arms manufacturer!! and what about the travelgate crooks???Still in their jobs! The ANC is now just a joke! god help us!

  • ehomes - 2011-10-13 06:26

    SA citizens should stop paying tax, because we fuel corruption. Right?

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