KZN probes stalled

2010-01-20 00:00

THE outcome of a number of forensic inquiries into KwaZulu-Natal’s Social Development Department have yet to see the light of day.

One inquiry involves the disappearance of assets being transported from Ulundi, the former provincial capital, to Pietermaritzburg. The disappearance of these assets that never reached Pietermaritzburg contributed to the department receiving a qualified audit for the second year in a row. This was because the department’s asset records were incomplete.

MEC Meshack Radebe pointed out that the problem resulted from his department being the last to move from Ulundi to Pietermaritzburg and that it did not previously have an asset register.

He said an investigation will reveal what happened to the items that did not reach the city.

Radebe would not give more information on the investigations conducted within his department. He said the reports cannot be made public until they are presented to cabinet. He added that steps that involve the freezing of bank accounts and other assets of the culprits have yet to be carried out. He confirmed that a lot of money is involved and alleged that “high-profile” people are implicated.

Both the Inkatha Freedom Party and the Democratic Alliance expressed concern over the number of forensic investigations carried out in the department that are awaiting public scrutiny.

The DA’s Johann Krog estimated that the amount may involve more than R200 million.

Krog slammed the delays, pointing out that provincial Treasury had made recommendations about the investigation of fraudulent activities in the Sustainable Livelihood Projects as far back as August 2008.

He said the recommendations had been handed to the department for implementation. However, to date, nothing seems to have happened. “This is yet another example of a cover-up.”

The department head, Bheki Nkosi, gave the following update on the investigations in Social Development:

The 2007 Spider Weir/Gadget:

This involved officials using computer software to steal from the department. Nkosi said the Scorpions were investigating the matter and officials were suspended. However, with the demise of the Scorpions the investigation fell away and the officials had to be re-instated. The investigation has since been reopened with the Special Investigation Unit.

Procurement Irregularities

involving Advocate Mdladla:

The report is being finalised to present to law enforcement authorities so that criminal proceedings can be instituted against the individuals and organisations implicated. Internal disciplinary hearings are being prepared and improved controls have been implemented in the supply chain.

Investigation into the ‘Emerging Learning Experience’:

An independent investigator has been appointed to deal with this matter. Nkosi said that to speed up investigations, the province needs to formalise a committee for managing forensic probes. This committee should include the Special Investigation Unit, crime combating units, the State Attorney and the SA Police Service.






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. 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

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.