Madonsela tackles home affairs

2012-01-22 20:45

Johannesburg - Public Protector Thuli Madonsela has started on her next big investigation: a “flawed” R2.4bn tender to revolutionise the home affairs department.

Madonsela has confirmed that she has appointed a team of investigators to probe the controversial “Who Am I Online” tender, awarded by home affairs to listed IT firm Gijima in 2007.

The tender was originally awarded for R1.9bn in 2007, but the cost increased to R4.5bn before it was cancelled by Home Affairs Minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma in 2010.

One of Madonsela’s focuses will be whether Gijima chief executive Jonas Bogoshi was conflicted when, as chief of strategic services at the State Information Technology Agency (Sita), he participated in awarding the tender to Gijima and joined the company less than 12 months later.

Gijima is chaired and partly owned by businessman Robert Gumede, who is a known ANC benefactor.

Home affairs and Gijima reached a settlement last year, in which the value of the tender was reduced to R2.4bn  and both parties agreed to bear the financial brunt.

Auditor General Terence Nombembe revealed last week that home affairs wrote off R321m as unauthorised expenditure due to the Gijima settlement.

This was the single biggest contributor to the department incurring R1bn in unauthorised, irregular and wasteful expenditure in 2010/11.

This also made home affairs the national department that recorded the highest percentage of wasted expenditure – 16% of its R6.5bn yearly budget was either wasted or spent irregularly.

Despite this, Nombembe lauded home affairs for improved performance and for receiving an unqualified audit opinion.

Forensic probes

Gijima previously reported a loss of R374m due to settlement expenses. Home affairs director general Mkuseli Apleni told City Press on Friday the settlement with Gijima had no effect on the continuation of forensic probes into the tender.

Nombembe’s office, on the request of former home affairs minister Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula, originally investigated the process that led to the awarding of the tender and provided a report to her in February 2009.

Mapisa-Nqakula subsequently handed the auditor general’s report to independent forensic analyst Professor Harvey Wainer, who finalised his report in December 2009.

In early 2010 the contract was cancelled – partly because a central feature of the tender, to process online visa applications, wasn’t ready in time for the World Cup tournament.

Apleni said they decided to temporarily stop the investigation while negotiations with Gijima got under way after the World Cup.

“But negotiations can’t mean that when you find irregularities in the process, you will put them under the carpet,” he said.

After a settlement was reached, home affairs went back to Wainer, who advised them to take the matter to the special investigating unit (SIU) or police as he had no powers to subpoena.

At the same time Madonsela received a complaint from a member of the public and requested documentation on the matter from home affairs. She was provided with the auditor general’s and Wainer’s reports.

“We can’t go to the SIU or police while the public protector is investigating. Let’s wait for the public protector to investigate the matter and come back to us,” Apleni said.

The auditor general’s report, a copy of which City Press has obtained, confirms Apleni’s views that the contracting process was flawed.

Several flaws

Noseweek first revealed that the report, marked “strictly confidential”, identified several flaws in the tendering process administered by Sita for home affairs.

Thirteen of 27 prescripts evaluated by the auditor general were not complied with.

Non-compliance included that no business agreement existed to clarify the roles and responsibilities of parties; one of Gijima’s sub-contractors submitted an invalid tax clearance certificate, and a competitor, Ideco, scored the highest points for the first part of the evaluation, but was not recommended due to incomplete pricing information – while Gijima also submitted pricing information that was incomplete.

The auditor general also noted Bogoshi’s jump from Sita to Gijima nine months after serving on the committee that recommended Gijima for the tender.

  • jansteyn78 - 2012-01-22 21:16

    A-loot-a continua

      Robert - 2012-01-22 23:01

      Jonas Bohishi left SITA from a very high position to become CEO of Gijima. Mavuso Msimang left SITA to become DG of Home Affairs. Julius Malema, Cele, Roux Shibango where special quests on Roberts lavish and opulent wedding. They all met there. He sponsors ANC with Big bugs. Once golf caddy - now self proclaimed billionaire. Who am I on Line should have been finished before soccer world cup - The most simplest of technologies and failed and even double the budget. Who is this arrogant speaking individual. No Fear. Where is his links cancelling tenders not going his way. Please AG investigate the police for they would have been a better organisation if this fool did influence the cancellation of tenders that did not go his way. SAPS, Correctional services, Home Affairs. Mapumalanga, Limpopo tenders - Even KZN, Toll roads in Gauteng, Excecujet tenders not to mention other controversial tenders. This guy is a snake with a lot of money and people in his pocket. Who is he backing in the next election, First Mbeke, then Zuma with Julius - YouTube video on a R60 Million rand wedding. OPEN YOUR EYES AG this guy is seriously dirty. What happened to the boyfriend of his wife that disappeared that gave her HIV. Interesting how he operates.

      Robert - 2012-01-22 23:07

      Maybe you should ask Livingston whom spear headed the communications with Home affairs and later left Gijima on bad terms.

      Robert - 2012-01-22 23:10

      Dont buy Gijima shares, sell..................

  • Sithando - 2012-01-22 21:39

    Surely this woman will end up being exhausted,how do you let her tackle everything alone? when you have all the knowledge of how things should be handled. I bet you 1000 news24 regular bloggers plus her, can make a dent on corruption.OR all that you know is just to fart in front of your screens?

      Riaan - 2012-01-22 22:27

      I don't know whether you are just stupid by nature (judging from your picture) or just trying to act stupid, but she's not investigating these cases personally. She has a whole team of investigators. Chop

      Riaan - 2012-01-22 22:49

      And to all you cretins giving him a thumbs up. He's insulting you without you even realising it.

      Garth - 2012-01-23 07:14

      He gives himself the `thumbs up's; probably `thumb down's his posts too - one never knows when dealing with an anc ignorant, exactly where the depths of its stupidity, will take it to next.

  • Bennie - 2012-01-22 22:17

    Banana anyone?

      Riaan - 2012-01-22 22:27

      Offer whitty one. He looks (and sounds) like a banana eater. LOL

      Sithando - 2012-01-22 23:43

      riaan, chill you(_*_)

  • Godfrey - 2012-01-22 22:48

    Judging by all the "dirt" that is coming out this year (this story, Limpopo etc) I would recommend the ANC have its Elective Conf. every 2nd year.

      Juan - 2012-01-23 04:23

      Well I suggest the ANC dissapears altogether

  • Max - 2012-01-22 22:55

    This one we all know about and was already discussed in the media, there are bigger IT system corruption currently going on in government with their big transversal system integration project and everyone in the industry is keeping quiet because they are waiting for the crumbs from the table. SITA is corrupt to the core.

      Garth - 2012-01-23 07:09

      The useless, thieving, racist anc is corrupt to the core.

  • Bennie - 2012-01-22 23:11

    People who cannot even opperate calculators should not be in IT !!

  • lmarima - 2012-01-22 23:50

    It seems all these big ICT companies have a problem of corruption on their hands when dealing with government tenders. The question is :- does SITA have capacity to deliver on it's mandate? I doubt it does, hence people award a tender and jump ship to join the very same company that won the tender.--speak of coincidence here.

      pws69 - 2012-01-23 07:53

      I heard a story about a SITA exec, a government network (R212 million worth) and a swimming pool. That is all it took, one swimming pool.

  • Joe - 2012-01-23 00:50

    HTF does a tender of R1.9bn escalate to R4.5bn? A tender, specially a government one, is very clear on costs. The bidding company is bound to the quoted cost. That was 1,9 quoted and accepted, not a variable that happened to escalate to 4,5. R2,6bn thus used to line some gravy train idiots' pockets.

      Showerhead Zooma - 2012-01-23 05:18

      They forgot to add my see right. Be reasonable!

      Ben - 2012-01-23 06:38

      In fact they tender to share the proceeds but they do not keep in mind that other thieves might find out and would have to be kept quiet. Bad planning.

  • SarelJBotha - 2012-01-23 07:56

    Auditor General Terence Nombembe- That is me not trusting you any further.

  • Pierre - 2012-01-23 09:25

    “Home affairs” do not have the best record to date, but also look into the private sector outsource companies. Many public-private projects are highly successful, but there are real abuse and waste within the private sector too. This was an ambitious project, but one that could have been completed within a reasonable budget I think.

  • ludlowdj - 2012-01-23 09:56

    Move along people, nothing to see here, just more corruption and theft by the government. But don't worry folks we will vote them back in again for another term, so it they have missed something don't worry they will get it next time around.

  • leemalin.moodley - 2012-02-22 08:36

    ..atleast i know that some of my tax money is doing some good..

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