Outside service provider to assist with probe into EFF tender kickback claims - Mashaba

2018-11-30 12:00

City of Johannesburg Mayor Herman Mashaba says an outside service provider will be appointed to assist the City's Anti-Corruption Unit in investigating allegations of kickbacks to the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) in a R1bn tender deal.

It is alleged that the City purposefully allowed the EFF to benefit from the tender to secure the party's support in the City council – allegations which have been denied.

On Thursday, amaBhungane reported that a fleet firm allegedly paid R500 000 to a company allegedly "fronted" by the cousin of EFF leader Julius Malema. The account is reportedly used as a "slush fund" for the EFF and Malema.

The firm, Afrirent, was reportedly appointed to manage the City of Joburg's fleet of vehicles and the contract is reportedly worth R1.26bn. AmaBhungane reported that, according to financial records, Afrirent transferred R500 000 to the company apparently belonging to Malema's cousin.

'I don't know whether to laugh or cry'

Malema's cousin told amaBhungane that the money was for legitimate services rendered, while Afrirent reportedly said the money was for a contract it had with the company, Mahuna, to provide "training and logistics for the delivery and implementation" of a contract.

The inference was that the City of Joburg had sent the fleet tender in the EFF’s direction in exchange for its co-operation in Mashaba's plans for the administration – a claim the City denied when amaBhungane asked about it.

On Friday, Mashaba had a short interview with Joburg Today TV, in which he said the allegations came as a "shock".

He said he had asked the head of the City's Anti-Corruption Unit, General Shadrack Sibiya, to appoint outside service providers to assist with his investigation into the claims.

"I don't know whether to laugh at it or cry, because I think this came as a shock to us as a City," Mashaba said.

"We were awaiting the article to see what it would contain. Upon seeing the tweet (about the article) I immediately requested General Sibiya to put (in) the best resources, and actually get outside service providers to work with him to really investigate what happened.

"If people are expecting us to chase ghosts, I'll really be disappointed. But on the other hand, if I find that there's any wrongdoing, there will be consequences," Mashaba said. 

Read more on:    city of joburg  |  eff  |  herman mashaba  |  julius malema  |  johannesburg  |  corruption  |  local government

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