The ANC in Gauteng is the latest governing party structure to reject the finding of the integrity commission. It is becoming an all too familiar pattern, as Deputy President David Mabuza, David Masondo and others accused of bringing the party’s name into disrepute did the same.
The provincial integrity commission made findings on health MEC Bandile Masuku, clearing him on the corruption charges, but saying he should have exercised more oversight in the department when it was disbursing large emergency contracts for personal protective equipment (PPE).
Unfortunately, the commission does not have the final word on the rulings, which are still subject to approval by the national or provincial executive committees.
This allows for politics to sneak into what should be neutral findings made by an independent body of veterans. The rulings then become subjected to factional politics, rather than our having public representatives clean of any scandal.
This makes us wonder why the ANC has touted the body as one that will keep the moral integrity of the party intact and clear of corrupt elements who besmirch its name through misconduct.
If it were successful in its work, theoretically at least, we would not have MPs like Bongani Bongo chairing parliamentary portfolio committees while facing a criminal trial for corruption.
Whatever the body’s initial intentions, it’s clear that it will not win this battle.
Systematically, ANC leaders are able to capitalise on the fact that it has no staff capacity to undertake any complex investigations to poke holes in its findings. We get a sense that we were being sold a dummy.
Corruption is so entrenched in the governing party that efforts to eradicate graft are almost doomed to fail.
As in the case of Gauteng, where the structures are now hoping that the Special Investigating Unit will provide clearer answers to the PPE looting, we also believe that it’s time law enforcement agencies took their work seriously.
They should haul to the courts and jail those dragging us into a dysfunctional state.