Govt officials pocketed R600m

2009-06-14 11:06

Johannesburg - South African civil servants rigged government tenders worth R600 million, a newspaper reported on Sunday, the latest corruption scandal in Africa's biggest economy.

The Sunday Times said an auditor general investigation into government officials who moonlight as business executives found more than 2 000 officials were involved in tender-rigging and corruption between 2005 and 2007, mostly at a regional level.

President Jacob Zuma has vowed to crack down on graft after the ruling ANC won an April election despite a string of corruption scandals, including a case against Zuma himself which was dropped on a technicality.

The paper said the report was presented to Parliament in April but was not discussed because of the election. No one could immediately be reached at the auditor general's office.

The Sunday Times said the report showed senior officials in regional and national government manipulated tender processes to award lucrative contracts to colleagues and relatives, including their spouses.