The Special Investigating Unit's (SIU) Special Tribunal has announced that it has received its first batch of cases to commence with civil proceedings against government departments and state organs in an effort to recover the billions looted from the state.In a statement issued on Monday, tribunal spokesperson Selby Makgotho said the SIU had handed over the cases to them after conducting and completing the investigations for civil proceedings. "The cases mainly relate to malpractices and irregular/fraudulent awarding of contracts, as well as to seek suspension and interlocutory orders as well as interdicts," said Makgotho.The tribunal was established by President Cyril Ramaphosa in February, after an announcement to that effect in his State of the Nation Address, News24 previously reported. In September, Justice and Correctional Services Minister Ronald Lamola gazetted the regulations for the SIU's Special Tribunal. These regulations came into effect upon their publication in the Government Gazette.Siphoned public fundsThe value of cases ready for adjudication and recovery stands at R14.7bn.Makgotho said the tribunal also had a mandate to recover public funds siphoned from the fiscus through fraud and illicit money flows.He said that the president of the tribunal, Judge Gidfonia Mlindelwa Makhanya, had met with its members and "expressed the need to move with the required speed on the work, especially because it has only three years in which to operate and finalise its work".Makhanya will chair the tribunal for three years and is assisted by seven other judges.They are judges Icantharuby Pillay, Johannes Eksteen, Selewe Peter Mothle, Lebogang Modiba, Thina Siwendu, David van Zyl and Sirajudien Desai."There is an undeniable evidence indeed that the majority of the people in this country are sick and tired of, and demand justice to prevail," Makhanya said.