Officials implicated in Nkandla scandal paid millions

2017-05-08 15:52
(File, Netwerk24)

(File, Netwerk24)

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Cape Town - While no criminal proceedings were instituted against three officials implicated in the Special Investigations Unit's (SIU) report on Nkandla, two of these officials each received salaries of more than R2m.

Furthermore, several bonuses were paid out to officials also implicated in the report.

In answering a parliamentary question from Democratic Alliance leader Mmusi Maimane, Nathi Nhleko, Minister of Public Works, stated the SIU referred evidence for possible criminal action against three former senior officials of the department of public works and one contractor involved in the Nkandla matter to the National Prosecuting Authority.

"The latter declined to prosecute the three officials and the enquiry against the contractor is apparently still pending," reads Nhleko's answer.

When the SIU report was released it was reported that the three officials are Solly Malebye, Sam Vukela and Siviwe Dongwana, who were acting or permanent directors-general between 2009 and 2012.

"The SIU instituted a civil claim against Makhanya Architects, the principal architect in the Nkandla matter, in the KwaZulu-Natal High Court. The proceedings are pending."

Disciplinary actions

The SIU referred evidence for possible disciplinary action against 12 employees of the department who were involved in the Nkandla matter to the department.

The department instituted disciplinary actions against all 12 of the employees.

One employee pleaded guilty and he was found guilty of misconduct.

The penalty was suspension without pay and a final written warning.

One of the employees died.

The disciplinary hearings against the remaining ten employees have commenced.

"The names of twelve officials that were subjected to disciplinary hearings cannot be disclosed until the cases have been finalised," reads Nhleko's answer.

Of these employees, six received performance bonuses between April 2012 and March 2017, totalling R222 743.35.

Zuma exonerated

The highest amount is R60 766.35 and the lowest R11 205.66.

Maimane also asked what the total remuneration earned by each of the officials, whom the SIU referred to the NPA to be criminally charged in each of the past five financial years, was.

One of the officials was paid R2 398 851.00 between April 1 2011 and June 30 2013, and the other R2 450 384.25 April 1 2011 to October 31 2012.

The last dates reflect when the officials left the department's employ.

The third official was not in the employment of the department in the past five financial years from April 1 2011 to March 31 2016.

The SIU's investigation, tabled in Parliament in September 2014, exonerated President Jacob Zuma from any wrongdoing regarding the so-called "security improvements" to his private home in Nkandla in KwaZulu-Natal.

An inter-ministerial task team came to a similar conclusion, but former Public Protector Thuli Madonsela found that Zuma and his family unduly benefitted from the improvements and that Zuma should pay back some of the money.

An ad hoc committee of Parliament challenged Madonsela's findings and referred the matter to Nhleko, then in his former position as minister of police, to determine which of the improvements were security related.

At a bizarre press conference in May 2015, Nhleko announced that his investigation found that the "fire pool", chicken run, cattle kraal visitor's centre and amphitheatre were indeed security measures and that Zuma did not have to pay anything.

The National Assembly adopted another ad hoc committee's report which approved Nhleko's findings, but the Economic Freedom Fighters took the matter to the Constitutional Court, which delivered a damning finding against Zuma and ordered that he must pay a part of the money.

In 2016, he paid the R7.8m as determined by Treasury thanks to a loan obtained from VBS Mutual Bank.

Read more on:    siu  |  jacob zuma  |  durban  |  corruption  |  nkandla upgrades

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