Corruption is stealing people’s futures – Madonsela

2012-04-18 08:26

Public Protector Thuli Madonsela is meeting residents of the Nala municipality in the Free State today following a public lecture in Bloemfontein yesterday in which she said corruption was stealing people’s futures.

During the lecture on universities, academic freedom and the information bill at the University of the Free State, Madonsela said students and academics must help to get the country’s constitutional dream back on track.

“We are not there yet,” Madonsela said.

She said despite many challenges, “today” was better than “yesterday” in South Africa.

Focusing on investigations by her office, Madonsela said a better life for all was coming slowly for ordinary people, but that corruption was stealing many people’s futures.

It also had a significant impact on the quality of basic services.

Madonsela said academics could help by developing the law to better fight aspects of corruption.

She said the public protector’s office also needed experts in various fields while investigating complaints. “Private experts are expensive.”

Madonsela said “young academics” should also help start the debate in civil society on issues such as the protection of state information bill.

She said students should debate the change in constitutional language used in regard to the public protector’s powers and open the debate on judicial enforcement.

“Students tweet about everything, also very technical things.”

Madonsela urged them to help instil proper values in society and to help people understand how the government works.

It would help in the fight against corruption if ordinary people knew how the government worked, she said.

The Nala municipality includes the towns of Wesselsbron and Bothaville.

Madonsela’s will first meet with residents and then inspect some of the projects about which residents have been complaining.

The Nala municipality is among a list of four municipalities in the Free State where forensic investigations took place but the full reports with the findings have never been made public. The reports which could implicate politicians and officials, have been gathering dust for years.

The DA in the province said it was waiting for a response from Free State Premier Ace Magashule’s office after it formally requested these reports in terms of the Promotion of Access to Information Act last month.

- Sapa and Cathy Dlodlo

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