Corruption fight incoherent - Pikoli

2011-04-22 07:32

Pretoria - South Africa lacks a coherent and comprehensive approach to fighting corruption, former National Prosecuting Authority boss Vusi Pikoli said on Thursday.

Speaking at a seminar at the University of South Africa in Pretoria, he said that according to the latest figures he was aware of, less than 15% of allegations of corruption were being investigated.

Pikoli, who is now involved with the Council for the Advancement of the SA Constitution (Casac), said the recent majority judgment of the Constitutional Court proved that there was no dispute over the need for an independent agency to fight crime.

The question was rather one about the level of independence such an agency would have.

On March 17, the Constitutional Court ruled that current legislation left the Hawks unit vulnerable to political interference.

Pikoli said that the record of the Scorpions - which was disbanded in January 2009 - spoke for itself.

"We need to have a dedicated independent agency."

He said there were at least eight government institutions to investigate corruption as a part of their mandates.

The "overlapping mandates" proved that there was no clear strategy to fight corruption.

"They do not have as a primary mandate the investigation of corruption. This reflects the absence of a coherent and comprehensive approach to the fight against corruption."

Pikoli said it was "no surprise" that South Africa was "falling down the ladder" on indices monitoring corruption.

He recommended there be a statutory body to monitor what became of investigations into corruption by such a corruption fighting agency.

Without such monitoring investigations could lapse.

"We know what happened to the arms deal investigation. It fizzled out."

Change in tactics

He advocated that parliament's standing committee on public accounts (Scopa) have "more teeth".

He lamented the fact that there was no institution that dealt with education in the fight against corruption.

"Despite these (eight) institutions that we have, none of them actually has got a mandate to deal with the issues of education on corruption."

The problem with any corruption investigation was that it would "attain a high level of political attention" and possible political interference.

The fight against corruption needed to go beyond making political statements.

Referring to the recent protests in Ficksburg where protester Andries Tatane was beaten and shot last week, Pikoli said: "Andries Tatane's right to dignity was clearly violated."

Casac had lodged a formal complaint with the Human Rights Commission.

"He paid the ulitimate price for his rights. We failed Andries."

It was "quite astonishing that given this time in our history that we are still witnessing police brutality as in the apartheid time".

Pikoli said police would have to change their tactics in dealing with crowd control.

Eight policemen have been charged in connection with Tatane's death.

  • Fred - 2011-04-22 08:18

    South Africa lack the political will to fight crime, this can clearly be seen by the fact that known criminals in the government are moved side ways when caught stealing from the government or municipal offices they work for instead of been arrested and jailed.

      MrSpiderman - 2011-04-22 09:04

      Fred, you must have done crime to be an anc politician. It is prrof of your ability, education and experience!

      allie - 2011-04-22 09:31

      They move him sideways otherwise he rats on them.Gangsters,all of them.What pusles me as that they are not happy stealing say R4m which is enough to live on,they go for the multimillions,20 upwards.This from people earning peanuts in the old days.

  • colin - 2011-04-22 08:44

    well, when the captain of the ship is rotten , the rest will follow.

  • whiteass - 2011-04-22 08:45

    In reality it is to the government’s interest not to fight corruption, seeing that the biggest perpetrators are our elected officials and their cronies. A good example Aurora mines.

      MrSpiderman - 2011-04-22 09:05

      They "nationalised" two mines, both bankrupt! Wait until they nationalise all of them and the banks!

  • Slapper - 2011-04-22 08:47

    The problem is, that this is a deliberate policy by the Ruling ANC. They are not going to effectively control corruption because it is mainly themselves that are involved. I can not see this changing until there is a meaningful presence in Parliament of a strong opposition, or better still, a complete change of Government.

      CKS - 2011-04-22 09:07

      I do not agree that it is only the ANC. The DA is also very guilty. Non of the ANC or DA parlementarians who were caught in the travelgate scandal were fired. Deals were made and they are still on the gravy train.

      Slapper - 2011-04-22 10:05

      The Policy is purely ANC and only they can change it at the moment. Unless the policy and the law is changed, it does not matter who is in power, they will take advantage. The problem is with ANC and not DA.

  • Benzo - 2011-04-22 08:51

    Lack of coherence is one aspect, lack or total absence of consistency in treatment when discovered is equally worrying if not more. Arms deal, travel-gate to name a few prominent ones.

  • abrham - 2011-04-22 09:20

    how can criminals(anc) fight crime, it will be suicide - imagine winnie joining casac, she wiil not survive such honest ordeal

  • Philip Steel - 2011-04-22 09:29

    To you and I and the man on the street it is corruption at its worst, to the people in power it is considered one of the perks of the job!

  • Umfubi - 2011-04-22 09:47

    My goodness. Surely both Pikoli and News24 mean that SA lacks COHESION rather than coherence? I suppose a tiny argument could be made for the latter, by purists, but really this is about cohesion and cohesive, not coherence/incoherence. How very shoddy.

      Bill - 2011-04-22 10:20

      Hey Umfubi, you're Matric class of 2010....right?

      braveinternetguy - 2011-04-22 11:46

      Well spotted :)

      Homo Sapien - 2011-04-22 12:57

      Coherent means to make logical sense. In essence the speech writer is correct in using that word, as it is implied that the government has no logical interconnected plan to fight corruption. Cohesive means to stick together. Both words used in a sentence: The ANC has a COHERENT corruption plan to enable all the criminals in government to form a COHESIVE unit, in order to maximise the amount of money that can be stolen from the poor.

      captainm - 2011-04-23 11:11

      I agree but does it matter? We all know the meaning. The anc is corrupt, period!

      Umfubi - 2011-04-23 16:43

      @Homo sapien: ADHESIVE means to stick together. :-)

      Homo Sapien - 2011-04-23 18:17

      @umfubi - Yes, I agree that adhesive means to stick together! The facetious remark was utterly rhetorical, and meant as a jocular portrayal of the totally inept ANC government who employs all sorts of machinations to utterly exploit the proletariat. Obviously, the joke went waaaaaaaaaaaayyyyyyyyyyyy above your head!

      Umfubi - 2011-04-24 10:23

      @homo sapien: Joke? where??

  • marco - 2011-04-22 09:55

    Corruption in South Africa's ruling ANC Goverment is as follows as was published by professor Micheal Savage,a sociologist,entitled "Theft,fraud and violence:South African MPs do it all.He says this:A culture of impunity has made the South African parliament one of the most scandal-ridden in the world whereby MPs are arrested for drunken driving,shoplifting,fraud and corruption offences.Of the 535 MPs,29 have been guilty of domestic violence,7 have been arrested for fraud,19 accussed of bouncing cheques,117 have been involved in at least 2 businesses that have gone bankrupt,71 cannot obtain a credit card 'cause of bad credit ratings,14 have been arrested on drug-related charges,8 arrested for shoplifting,84 arrested for drunken driving.Tony Yengeni,former chief whip in the Anc,who was convicted for fraud in 2003 while chairing the country's defence commitee says this of their ANC elite:"What does the high court got to do with my life?I don't have to ask permission from them to do certain things...When asked about his numurous luxury cars which includes a MASERATI and 2 BMW's he replied "many other people have cars including white people who still have all the wealth of this country".For those brought up in the townships politics becomes the doorway to self-enrichment.Survivalism in SA is seen as political entitlement.Few MP's ever goes to prison.Travelgate?? The infamous Travelgate scandal saw Parliament paying millions of rands for bogus travel claims by MPs.

      onetickie - 2011-04-22 10:40

      Perhaps our only hope will having a North Africa happen here in SA. A scary thought but what the ANC is doing to SA is even more scary.

  • Shai-hulud - 2011-04-22 09:59

    I think the truth is rather that the ANC lacks a coherent and comrehensive approach to fighting corruption, which stems from a complete absence of political will to fight corruption, because most or all of the ANC elite has benefitted from corruption.

  • Bosduif - 2011-04-22 10:10

    This man was the only one who actually did his job --- and got fired. It's a circus ladies and gents.

  • Bill - 2011-04-22 10:17

    Of course the ANC lacks a coherent and comprehensive approach to fighting corruption. They can’t, because how do you reel in someone that is corrupt and charge him, when you yourself are just as guilty of the same shenanigans. If you expose someone, he then exposes you! It is a catch 22 situation because they are all just as corrupt as each other!

      captainm - 2011-04-23 11:17

      I agree but does it matter? We all know the meaning. The anc lacks cohesion/coherence, period!

  • p123 - 2011-04-22 10:35

    Isn't it obvious why, the ANC is rotten and corrupt to the core!!! It's not in their interests to have corruption investigated. Sad bit is you'd think someone would realise that corruption is the overwelming reason why 98% of African countries are failed states. For white racists it's not becuase of the colour of the government. For black racists, keep your race cards in your pockets and focus on the facts - corruption has no colour!!! Your ANC is corrupt, time to face the facts!!! Colour Blind...

  • onetickie - 2011-04-22 10:35

    Corruption should be recognized by us, the masses, as the ANC's slogan. Thats what they stand for along with so many other negative issues which are too long to list and which most enlightened South Africans know anyway. So along with the corrpution by SA leaders and the fiasco of jARSE's Hate Speech Hearing of promoting land grabs, mine grabs, corporate companies, bank grabs (he excluded Vodacom so probably has a deal with them) I believe SA has already tipped the scale where its downward spiral is going to speed up at a rate nobody could have predicted. Unless by some form of a miracle there is a massive intervention somehow from someone. And thats not going to happen because unless the DA thrashes the ANC once and for all there will be little for even them to inherit should they succeed some time in the future. Thankfully President Mandela is no doubt too frail to be following SA's slide into anarchy and that is his blessing, that after what he fought for, he maybe won't have to see it was all in vain.

      captainm - 2011-04-23 11:20

      Mandela would be disgusted with the present anc. Notice how little his name is mentioned by Zuma and co?

  • mynah - 2011-04-22 10:42

    Matthews Phosa has a lot to say about fighting corruption - but it is very widely known that many business developments are blocked unless they cross his palm with silver. And this is the treasurer of the ANC...

  • Johan - 2011-04-22 10:54

    Can you guys just imagine how utterly banana we look to the rest of the world. If there were ONE institution that were better of after '94 but there is none. They just can't manage and they have a corruption gene they can't get rid of even if they try. They always have a mouthful to say but the skills to implement they lack off. Power-hungry they will reap what is not theirs while their brothers die of hunger. Only GOD can deliver us.

      captainm - 2011-04-23 11:25

      You are right, unfortunately. I was in China recently and the guys I dealt with were laughing at Zuma, who was in the country at that time. Ordinary Chinese laughing at my(?) President is highly embarrassing. We just have to vote the anc out!

  • Tarzan - 2011-04-22 10:58

    Oh my goodness, the South African economy will surely implode if corruption is stamped out tomorrow. It would be like removing the most important cornerstone from the South African economy. Eish man! Just as well he didn’t mention the big boss’s name and all the corruption cases that were dropped against him. Nah, that would be playing with the lion’s balls now wouldn’t it?

  • Homo Sapien - 2011-04-22 11:11

    The problem runs FAR deeper than merely saying "The ANC is corrupt". Anybody can see that. The issue we as South Africans need to address is the CAUSE of the disease. The problem in South Africa MIGHT APPEAR to be an overall attitude of lawlessness, a total lack of responsibility and accountability, and a general disrespect for the law amongst ALL citizens, but yet, that in itself is just another symptom. The solution lies not in writing fancy laws. Those laws need to be ENFORCED. However, it would appear as though the government is unwilling to enforce the law so as to protect themselves. Since it is claimed that in a democracy "the people have the power", it thus lies with the electorate to ENFORCE their WILL on the government to ENFORCE the law! I exceed the speed limit, and I am stopped by a traffic cop. I am not keen to pay a R1,000 fine, but the cop is hinting at a reduced "spot fine" of R100 without the accompanying paper plain English, he wants a bribe. What do I do? Pay a R1,000, or give this crooked cop R100? Or do I wip out my cellphone (as I have done on NUMEROUS occasions) and force the traffic cop to repeat his offer on camera for me or write the fine? See, THIS IS THE PROBLEM! We like breaking the law, as long as it is to our benefit. So does the government. The ROOT problem is an electorate who are not willing to FORCE government to ENFORCE the law. 49 million people against a government of a few hundred? I am confident we CAN FORCE them.

      captainm - 2011-04-23 11:30

      Power to the People means the People MUST USE THAT POWER! Not sit back and mutter clichés as the anc does. For example ... "Leave no stone unturned".

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