Wild Dog Adventure Riding

General => About South Africa... => eTolls - The Resistance => Topic started by: alanB on December 05, 2013, 12:16:05 pm

Title: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on December 05, 2013, 12:16:05 pm
The whole argument from the government regarding etolls is that there is  no other way to pay for the freeway upgrade and maintenance.

The minister of finance stood up in parliament and said in passionate tones, almost tearing his clothes saying "the fiscus could not stand it!".

But EVERY SINGLE DAY there is an article in the press about how the government just keeps pissing away our money through lavish spending on them selves, incompetence (ie appoint some twit into a position at some ludicrously high salary, and then he either makes stupid decisions, costing money, or they need to hire "consultants" at even more ludicrous fee structures to do his job for him/her), etc etc.


So I would submit our country SHOULD EASILY BE ABLE TO PAY FOR ALL INFRASTRUCTURE OUT OF EXISTING TAXES WITHOUT ANY NEED TO INCREASE THE FUEL LEVY OR IMPOSE TOLLS!


All they need to do is do their jobs and eliminate wasteful expenditure or fraud and corruption.  If they just put half the effort they did into that instead all the time and effort in forcing through etolls, they would have paid for the roads ALREADY plus be a few billion in the black over and above that! ( we are wasting 25bn a year according to their own report from 2012, so by now they could have paid for the freeway improvements and have 20 odd billion in the bank spare!) 

When etolls were first announced I started collecting press releases which showed this.  It quickly became quite a big job on its own and stopped after a while  but I thought it might be useful to creat a place just to drop these articles to remind ourselves from time to time why the whole thing is just so wrong!

A few guidelines:
1) Please copy and paste the actual article, not the link, because the links will eventually go dead.
2) Include the source, date  and person who wrote the article - so that the source is clear and we give due acknowledgement to the publishers and author.
3) Stick to info in the public domain.

Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on December 05, 2013, 12:18:27 pm
The governments report on wasteful/lost/stolen etc expenditure.

R25bn PER YEAR!

Quote
axpayers didn't get value for R25bn
2012-01-16 16:38
Xolani Mbanjwa

Johannesburg - Auditor General Terence Nombembe has unearthed R25bn in unauthorised, irregular, fruitless and wasteful expenditure in national and provincial government departments in the 2010/2011 financial year.

Nombembe, who expressed concern about the financial controls in public sector spending, said this was an increase of R2.3bn compared with the previous financial year - because of his office's increased "scrutiny" of taxpayers’ money.

The exact figure of R25.445bn includes the spending of government entities such as Eskom and the SA National Roads Agency Limited.

Addressing reporters in Pretoria this morning Nombembe said he felt the most discomfort about the area of financial reporting, where government officials failed to record the correct amounts spent.

He said financial information was often corrected by his own officials during the auditing process at the end of the financial year.

While national and provincial departments, including entities, reported R13.7bn in unauthorised, irregular, fruitless and wasteful spending in their annual reports, the AG found a further R11.7bn through the final auditing processes.

Nombembe said financial managers should be trained to be able to report on finances correctly before all spheres of government could reach the target of clean audits by 2014.

"It (correct financial reporting) is the single and sole factor that will make clean audits in SA a reality. The role of the ministers, premiers, MECs, portfolio committees and Scopa [the standing committee on public accounts] is important,” said Nombembe.

One of the "biggest weaknesses" in government as a whole was the effectiveness of information technology systems and controls, said Nombembe.

The AG report shows that at provincial government level irregular expenditure - incurred in contravention of national laws - was the biggest culprit at R16.8bn, followed by unauthorised expenditure (overspending on certain projects) at R2.9bn while fruitless and wasteful expenditure (spending in vain, which could have been avoided) stood at R850m.

At national government level irregular expenditure was R4.5bn, fruitless and wasteful expenditure R593m and unauthorised expenditure was R802m.

Nombembe expressed concern that most government departments did not understand the requirements for meeting service delivery objectives and that departments were apparently deliberately not reporting their finances accordingly.

"Financial reporting is the biggest area of concern where there is [a] supply chain. This is where we still find a number of omissions by departments in adhering to departmental norms.

"Once again it’s an area, to a large extent, that does need to be given attention because there’s constant deviation. It doesn’t mean money has been lost, just that due processes are not embarked upon by government departments," said Nombembe.

He was also concerned with the high vacancy rate and called on government to employ skilled people who have an understanding of the basic accounting principles.

But Nombembe was pleased that senior government officials including the executive had committed themselves to improving the state of financial reporting and controls in the public sector.

He warned that unless the executive rise to the occasion and monitor financial controls in their respective departments Operation Clean Audit, set for 2014, would not be a reality.
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on December 05, 2013, 12:19:47 pm
Quote
ANC funds ‘used for wrong purpose’

December 4 2013 at 12:04pm
By Natasha Bezuidenhout

Comment on this story
Copy of IOL pic sep16 rsa bank notes

Reuters

File photo

Cape Town - Fired ANC parliamentary staffers have claimed in the Labour Court that the party diverted statutory funds to finance its 2009 election campaign.

At the time the ANC caucus retrenched 89 staff members.

Fifteen employees took the party to court for alleged unfair dismissal.

On Tuesday, advocate Alec Freund, representing the staffers, questioned former ANC chief whip Nyami Booi in the Labour Court on statutory funds allegedly diverted to pay Oryx Media a total of R7.4 million to, among other things, assist with the party’s election campaign.

R15.6m was allegedly also diverted for accommodation and travelling.

Freund told the court that party constituency allowances and party administration funds were not supposed to be used for election and advertising.

“The funds were used for graffiti, floppy hats, airfares and hotels,” said Freund.


Booi said it would have been brought to his attention if the funds had been diverted and “that he was not aware of it”.

Freund submitted in court that Booi may be party to yet another offence.

In 2009, Booi was one of 31 MPs who pleaded guilty to abusing parliamentary travel warrants in the so-called Travelgate saga.

At the time he was fined R50 000 (or five years’ jail), and given until January 2014 to pay the money in monthly instalments of R1 000.

Booi told the court that Freund did not know what he was talking about and had no knowledge of how Parliament’s system runs.

“He doesn’t know what he’s talking about, he never worked for Parliament and I don’t want to engage with someone who has never worked for Parliament and doesn’t know how its systems work.”

Booi denied any knowledge of the figures spent on travelling expenditure which included hotel accommodation, flights and rental cars.

The case continues.

natasha.bezuidenhout@inl.co.za
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on December 05, 2013, 12:25:20 pm
Quote
Welcome aboard the gravy train
2011-09-18 19:00

Jacques Pauw, City Press

Johannesburg - If you are a public servant and want to get rich, join the National Youth Development Agency (NYDA).

A City Press investigation has revealed that the agency’s staff will earn an average salary of R517 000 each this financial year, prompting one of its directors to admit that it was nothing more than an ANC Youth League-dominated “gravy train”.

The investigation has shown that NYDA staff earn on average significantly more than most of the employees of 14 other similar public entities surveyed.

The agency also leaves other government departments in the shade in terms of average costs per job.

The NYDA, shrouded in controversy after it spent R100m on a youth festival in December last year and over the close links of its staff with the youth league, will receive R1.2bn over the next three years from the Treasury.

Treasury national budget documents show that each of the agency’s 339 staff members earned R430 000 on average last year.

The Treasury allocated R187.5m for salaries for 363 staff members for the current financial year: an average salary of R517 000 per employee.

'Errors'

NYDA chief executive Steven Ngubeni, whose yearly income of R1.8m is the same as that of a Cabinet minister, charged that City Press’ information, which was published by the Treasury and signed off by the Presidency, was “fraught with errors and misconception”.

Ngubeni said that in the previous financial year, the agency had 433 people – 94 more posts than were approved in the Treasury documents – and had paid them an average of R322 269 yearly.

But NYDA director Francois Slabber conceded to City Press that managers in the agency earn “far too much”.

Asked whether the agency was a gravy train, he said: “It had all the potential not to be one, but it is one now.”

Slabber, an independent board member, gets a yearly stipend of R378 000 for spending about five days a month on agency business, although he says it is “sometimes more”.

Slabber said since 2009 the agency had lost several of its “brightest stars” who are currently being replaced with “ANC
Youth League members who are not such bright stars”.

The chief operations officer of the agency, 33-year-old Magdalene Moonsamy, earns R1.2m. She is also a youth league spokesperson.

The agency’s chairperson, Andile Lungisa, earns R790 000 a year. He is also an executive member of the youth league and its former deputy president.

Until recently Ngubeni was the deputy secretary general of the league.

Discrepancies

City Press attempted to determine the discrepancies between the Treasury figures provided by the Presidency and Ngubeni’s figures.

The Presidency referred enquiries to the agency. Ngubeni said the Treasury did not determine their budget for them.

A Treasury spokesperson said that the accounting officers of public entities did have discretion on the use of appropriated funds, but the agency would have to account for why there was a change in what they had signed off on.

This was in terms of what had been planned for personnel and what the audited outcome was.

NYDA employees earn on average more than most public servants in national departments, but Ngubeni said a fairer comparison would be with similar public entities.

City Press obtained the figures for 14 entities from published Treasury documents.

For the current financial year, only Competition Commission employees have a higher average salary than the agency’s staff - R574 000 yearly compared to the agency’s R517 000.

The NYDA’s average salary was larger than that of agencies like the national credit regulator, Nedlac, the CSIR, Productivity SA and the National Gambling Board, among others .

- City Press
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on December 05, 2013, 12:26:03 pm
Quote
Suspect tenders of R3bn at public works
2011-09-19 15:24

Johannesburg - An investigation by the department of public works (DPW), in partnership with the special investigation unit, has revealed a number of serious irregularities in the award of certain tenders granted by the department, the minister of public works, Gwen Mahlangu-Nkabinde, disclosed on Monday.

Criminal charges were likely to be brought against several department officials and others outside the department, she said.

Mahlangu-Nkabinde said in a statement that since she took office ten months ago, she had been investigating a number of tenders awarded by the department.

"After I was appointed I discovered that the ANC, the government, and the people of South Africa had been let down by dishonest officials in the DPW; I was inadvertently handed a poisoned chalice," she said.

"I inherited a situation where serious irregularities had occurred. It was extraordinarily difficult to get to the truth of what had been taking place because some officials did everything they could to obstruct my investigations.

"Frankly, I have been lied to and deceived by people who instead of serving the people of South Africa were intent on lining their own pockets.

"We know of more than 40 cases where tenders were awarded improperly, where proper procedures were not followed and dishonesty took place. We have confirmed to date that tenders with a value of more than R3bn have been affected.

"Because we are still investigating we cannot be sure that we have yet discovered all of the wrong doing. We will involve law enforcement agencies within the public service and the criminal justice cluster in the hope that the wrong-doers will be brought to justice."

The minister said that the situation had overshadowed the good work the department did.

"It is sad that the public focus will now be on criminal activities instead of what has been achieved thanks to the hard work of many of our officials."

She added that she was in the process of strengthening her team to ensure the people of South Africa are better served.

"Under the circumstances it would be unrealistic to expect that the department will be given a clean bill of health by the auditor general. We know of irregular expenditure, what appears to be false book keeping and have discovered evidence of corruption by DPW officials.

"I cannot undo what was done in the past but I can assure South Africa that its government will not tolerate corruption and dishonesty. It will take me many months to unravel all that has happened but it will be done."

The minister said an urgent priority was to ensure that the process when leasing properties was tightened up and consistently applied.

"I cannot wave a magic wand and cure the ills of corruption overnight.

"What has to be done is for the department to become more vigilant in ensuring that proper tender procedures are followed. I would also like to see the justice system send a message to corrupt officials by handing down stiff penalties for those found guilty of white collar crime."
- I-Net Bridge (News24)
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on December 05, 2013, 12:30:05 pm
Quote
Concern over city managers' pay
2011-09-19 14:14

Johannesburg - Reports that city managers earned salaries comparable to senior political leaders warrant transparent performance agreements, the DA said on Monday.

"The Johannesburg city manager [Mavela Dlamini], for instance, earns R2.3m a year, which is higher than Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe," said Democratic Alliance Gauteng spokesperson Fred Nel.

Dlamini also had a better income than newly appointed Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng who earned R2.2m a year, he said.

The Sowetan reported on Monday that the only public official earning more than Dlamini was President Jacob Zuma with R2.5m annually.

Following Dlamini was eThekwini manager Mike Sutcliffe (R2.1m), Ekurhuleni manager Khaya Ngema (R1.8m) and City of Cape Town manager Achmat Ebrahim (R1.7m).

Nel said: "Publishing their performance contracts will allow citizens to see what is expected from top municipal officials who are paid with their rates and taxes."

This would also allow analysts to evaluate whether the performance agreements were in line with each municipality's service delivery strategy, he said.

"If ministers' agreements with the president can be published then so should that of municipal managers."

Outrage

The SA Municipal Workers’ Union said exorbitant salaries were at the expense of suffering workers and communities.

"It is absurd that these managers get paid millions, even though the municipalities they work for are plagued with corruption, nepotism, crisis and the poor delivery of services," the union said in a statement.

"The severity of the challenges faced by many municipalities warrants many of these managers to be sacked, let alone receive handsome remunerations and performance bonuses."

It said once workers, some who earned as little as R4 000 a month, learnt of their employers' salaries, nothing less than outrage would be expected.

"Workers deserve nothing less than a decent living wage and their managers far less than what they are currently getting."

Co-operative government spokesperson Vuyelwa Quinga Vika referred queries to the SA Local Government Association (Salga), which was not immediately in a position to comment.

- SAPA
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on December 05, 2013, 12:30:48 pm
Quote
Suspended officials paid almost R100m
2011-09-22 22:30

Cape Town - Government departments and entities have paid at least R93.6m to senior officials suspended with pay from April 2009 to the present, the Democratic Alliance said on Thursday.

"The actual figure is certainly much higher, but is difficult to ascertain precisely because many departments have not answered the DA's parliamentary questions on this," spokesperson Ena van Schalkwyk said.

In the 2009/10 financial year, 192 officials on salary scale 11 or above were placed on suspended leave with full pay, she said in a statement.

Another 173 had been suspended with full pay since that time, totalling 365 officials.

This amounted to an average of R257 000 paid to each official while on suspension.

"Nearly R100m has been paid to senior managers who have received full salaries despite not working," Van Schalkwyk said.

Innocent until proven guilty

Most of these officials received their salaries while awaiting the outcome of their disciplinary hearings. It was not clear how many of them were fired after the investigations were concluded and how many were retained. The DA would ask follow-up questions to find out.

Top of the list was the SA Social Security Agency paying R8 399 462, followed by the correctional services department on R6 751 607, and the rural development and land reform department on R5 800 979.

"Of course it is right that officials should not be punished financially just because they have been accused of wrongdoing. People must be considered innocent until proven guilty.

"However, we cannot have a situation where suspended officials wait for months on end with full pay before the disciplinary measures against them are finalised."

South Africa could not afford to keep errant public servants on the payroll while government departments dragged their feet. The quicker these matters were dealt with, the more money there would be for service delivery, Van Schalkwyk said.

- SAPA
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on December 05, 2013, 12:32:11 pm
Quote
Presidency spends R61m on travel - DA
2011-09-01 19:09

Johannesburg - The presidency has spent over R61m on travel and subsistence in the 2010/11 year, the Democratic Alliance says.

The party was commenting on the presidency's 2010/11 Annual Report, released on Thursday.

According to the DA's Athol Trollip, the report indicated that the presidency had "excelled at increasing the size of its budget, but not the quality of its performance."

Trollip said that between 2009/10 and 2010/11, the presidency's expenditure had increased by 74%.

However, according to the Auditor General's report, even the most basic regulatory processes were still not being followed, Trollip added.

"Despite spending over R61m on travel and subsistence, and almost R500m on the largely ANC Youth League-controlled National Youth Development Agency (NYDA), over the last financial year the presidency was unable to develop a satisfactory strategic plan, or implement sufficient performance monitoring procedures.

"How did this happen, given that the presidency includes the department of performance monitoring and evaluation, which is supposed to evaluate the performance of the entire national government?"

Trollip said the greatest impediment to the presidency's improved performance was the absence of regular oversight by a dedicated portfolio committee.

"Without constant parliamentary scrutiny to keep the department on the right track, the disjuncture between its vast budget and its underwhelming contribution to improving government performance will continue."

More than a year ago, Trollip proposed that a presidential portfolio committee be established to oversee the activities of the Presidency.

"The ANC has subsequently sought to bury this proposal in Parliament.

"I will be using the opportunity presented by today's release of the Presidency's annual report - and the concerning trends this report highlights - to put this proposal back on the parliamentary agenda."

Furthermore, Trollip would be submitting a series of questions to President Jacob Zuma and Minister in the Presidency Collins Chabane about areas of concern raised by the auditor general, and to interrogate the reasons for the Presidency's significant expenditure increase over the past financial year.
- I-Net Bridge (News24)
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on December 05, 2013, 12:33:08 pm
Quote
Govt corruption: R30bn could be lost - SIU
2011-10-12 22:46

Cape Town - The head of both the special investigating unit and the asset forfeiture unit said on Wednesday the country could lose as much as 20% of its total procurement budget to graft annually, in response to a question about the extent of government corruption in South Africa.

"I think that may not be an unrealistic estimate," Willie Hofmeyr told Parliament's justice committee, adding that it translated to between R25bn and R30bn.

The SIU was currently investigating 558 procurement contracts to the value of R1.9bn and 360 cases of conflict of interest where R3.4bn was involved.

Hofmeyr said the fight against corruption was hindered by a shortage of investigators and the low rate of criminal convictions of officials found with their fingers in the till.

"We should have 7 000 people whose job it is to investigate corruption and I think we have 700.

"Our policies are pretty good but if there are not consequences for breaching them... a culture of impunity spreads pretty quickly."

Hofmeyr welcomed the cancellation of the flawed lease contracts with Roux Shabangu for new police headquarters but went on to highlight further problems in the police and public works departments.

"From the kind of things we have found the SAPS leases are not an uncommon practice elsewhere."

SIU investigations have shown that public works paid at least R35m to entities where staff held undeclared interests and were investigating irregularities to the tune of R330mlinked to the building and renovation of 33 police stations.

However, he said, the worst leeching of taxpayers' money was not happening at national level.

"Local government is where the problems are the worst and where oversight mechanisms are the least."

Asked about the implications of the Constitutional Court judgment in the Glenister case, Hofmeyr said if a central anti-corruption agency were created he would like the SIU to be part of it and believed the Hawks also had a central role to play.

"There isn't really a centre from which government's anti-corruption efforts are driven. I think there is a bit of a gap there. The Glennister judgment is an urgent issue that needs to be resolved soon," he said.

"If there is a new corruption unit set up we would like very much to be part of it."

The court found that the legislation that created the Hawks did not give the unit enough independence and gave Parliament 18 months to amend it.

Funding trouble

The special investigating unit ran into severe funding trouble this year when Eskom established that legally it may not be paid by state entities that solicit its help, MPs heard.

He told the justice committee the corruption-busting entity had expected to earn R240m from such agreements but instead had to turn to Treasury to tide it over.

"We are getting an additional R97m from Treasury this year," he told MPs.

Hofmeyr said the SIU was alerted to the problem by Eskom in June after the electricity utility had asked it to probe "corporate governance issues", notably persistent problems surrounding its coal supply contracts.

He said the SIU obtained two legal opinions which confirmed that provided by Eskom, upsetting a 7-year-old practice that had seen it accepted remuneration from a range of state entities.

"We got our own legal opinion at the end of June and then a second opinion that confirmed it and accepted we have got a problem," he said.

"Basically, we are not allowed to charge departments for our services. Everybody was a bit blind-sided by this issue."

Hofmeyr mentioned the matter in a briefing on the SIU's annual report.

He said the unit had not wanted to make it public until it was confident of finding both long and short term solutions because it did not want its staff to fear for their jobs, he said.

An amendment to the SIU Act that would make such payments legitimate is in the pipeline, Hofmeyr said. At present, the legislation is silent on the issue.

- SAPA
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on December 05, 2013, 12:34:07 pm
Quote
Minister’s bills of luxurious hotels

24 Oct 2011

Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Minister Tina Joemat-Pettersson has spent 174 days staying at luxury hotels in Johannesburg and Cape Town.


Big-spender, Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Minister Tina Joemat-Pettersson has spent 174 days staying at luxury hotels in Johannesburg and Cape Town and managed to survive President Jacob Zuma's cabinet reshuffling today.
The Minister has only been in the office for two days and lived luxuriously in hotels despite having official residences in both areas.

This came to light on Monday in answers to a Parliamentary question by her opposite number, Lourie Bosman, in the official opposition party the Democratic Alliance (DA).

The cost to the taxpayer for the stays has totaled R1.6 million or R1 700 per stay, as Joemat-Pettersson chalked up stays in Peermont D'Oreale Grande Emperor's Palace in Gauteng, the Hydro Executive Apartments in Johannesburg, and Cape Town luxury hotels the Vineyard and The Table Bay.

Joemat-Pettersson, who is a member of the SA Communist Party, is one of the ministers in government's high court application to have more stringent conditions for the entry of giant US retailer Wal-Mart into the local market.

Wal-Mart, the world's biggest company has a strict code of conduct for its executives when they travel on corporate business.

They have to fly economy class, share hotel rooms and hire the lowest cost vehicles.

Other ministers who have declared themselves hostile to Wal-Mart's entry are Economic Development Minister Ebrahim Patel and Trade & Industry Minister Rob Davies.

Bosman said: "I feel it is very ironic that Joemat-Pettersson is staying in these high cost hotels while she is opposing the Wal-Mart deal and they set the example on how to keep costs down. I find this all very bizarre."

According to the reply sent by Joemat-Pettersson's office, she spent:

- 36 days at a cost of R135 000 at the Vineyard Hotel and Spa in Cape Town in July/August 2009

- 36 days costing R290 000 at the Peermont D’Oreal Grande Emperors Palace in Ekurhuleni, Gauteng in Sept/Oct 2009

- 28 days costing R420 000 at the Pure Toys One in Jun/Jul 2010

Expensive stays include:

- R15 000 at the Intercontinental at OR Tambo in Ekurhuleni Gauteng for one day in January 2010

- R24 000 at the Hydro Executive Apartments in Johannesburg for four days in June

- R10 629 at the Intercontinental OR Tambo for one day in April 2011

The answer then detailed double-booked stays:

- having paid to stay at the Vineyard Hotel in Cape Town, she stayed at the Peermont D’Oreal Grande Emperor’s Palace in Ekurhuleni, Gauteng for three nights between 16 to 19 June in 2009

- having paid to stay at the Intercontinental at OR Tambo International, she stayed at the 5-Star Table Bay Hotel in Cape Town on 12 April 2011

Pretoria stays:

- Sheraton Pretoria for three nights in May 2009 for R15 000

- Aluane Town Lodge for 31 days between May and June 2009 for R41 000

- Aluane Town Lodge for 31 days in October 2009 for R35 910 - Paul Vecchiatto I-Net-Bridge
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: dirtyXT on December 05, 2013, 12:34:31 pm
FML!  :deal:  :xxbah: ;) :sip:
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on December 05, 2013, 12:35:00 pm
Quote
R3.6m a month for empty building for dept
2011-08-04 14:15

Cape Town - The Democratic Alliance is referring a justice and constitutional development department building lease to the auditor general to investigate, it said on Thursday.

Justice Minister Jeff Radebe had confirmed in written reply to a parliamentary question that the public works department had leased a building in Pretoria for use by his department at a rental of R3.662m a month, DA spokesperson Debbie Schafer said in a statement.

"Rental has been paid since January 1 2010 and the building will only be occupied by November 30 2011 as they are still 'busy with the required tenant installations'.

"Thus, over a period of 23 months, an amount of R84 235 816.63 will have been paid to lease a building that has been empty for most of that time," she said.

An additional R150 000 had been paid since April on security services for the empty building.

'Shameful waste of money'

This was a "shameful waste of money and yet another example of irresponsible financial management" by the public works department.

Schafer said she intended posing additional parliamentary questions to determine why it was necessary for the justice department to lease a new building, and why it was rented at this not insignificant amount of money when it was "apparently unsuitable for use".

In addition, it was necessary to know what kind of work needed to be done to the building, which would be quite extensive if it had not yet been completed after 18 months, and who was paying for it.

This latest revelation was reminiscent of the police lease deal saga, where inflated rentals were agreed to by the public works department for buildings yet to be renovated.

An investigation into that deal by the public protector found that both Public Works Minister Gwen Mahlangu-Nkabinde and Police Commissioner Bheki Cele were guilty of conduct that was improper, unlawful, and amounted to maladministration.

"Depending on the answers received to my questions on the justice department lease this matter may also require investigation by the public protector.

"In the meantime, I shall refer it to the auditor general to investigate the seemingly fruitless and wasteful expenditure incurred to date," Schafer said.

- SAPA
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on December 05, 2013, 12:35:43 pm
Quote
Where's the money going, school body asks
2011-10-26 20:56

Bloemfontein - The government should find out what was happening to money budgeted for basic education, a school governing body said on Wednesday.

"The national government has put its money where its mouth is, but now we have to determine why the money disappears into a bottomless pit," said the Federation of Governing Bodies of SA Schools (Fedsas).

"The money must reach the schools."

Fedsas is a voluntary association of public scool governing bodies, claming to represent some 1 260 schools.

Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan presented his 2011 medium-term budget policy statement (MTBPS) in the National Assembly on Wednesday.

Fedsas deputy CEO Jaco Deacon said money budgeted for basic education, R231bn over the next three years, confirmed the national government was serious about education.

The problem was to determine what this money was spent on because parents had to pay an additional R10bn per year to fund salaries for additional staff.

"Fedsas applauds minister Gordhan’s continued commitment to and support of education, despite the fact that the system was underperforming," said Deacon.

He said some schools in Limpopo had not received a cent from their provincial government the past year.

In the Free State the education department sent a letter to schools to explain that there was not enough money for reimbursement for exemption of school fees, despite regulations in this regard.

Fedsas said such examples suggested a misappropriation of education money.

The governing body said the focus should not necessarily be on the funds available for education, but rather on how this money was used.

Deacon welcomed money made available for the continuation and expansion of the annual national assessments.

"This was a positive step because these results are the only real measure of the success of the system."

- SAPA
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on December 05, 2013, 12:36:37 pm
Quote
DA: President's new jet an extravagance
2011-11-06 15:3

Sapa

Johannesburg - The R1.6bn that the state is expected to spend on two new long range jets for the President Jacob Zuma and his deputy is "simply wrong", the DA said on Sunday.

"The fact is that it is simply wrong to spend R1.6bn on business jets when millions of people in our country do not have housing, health or access to basic services," Democratic Alliance MP David Maynier said in a statement.

The department of defence confirmed that a tender was out for the purchase of two new business jets for the exclusive use of Zuma and Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe. This after technical problems on VIP flights.

"It is an outrageous extravagance for President Jacob Zuma and Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe to each have dedicated long-range business jets," said Maynier.

Defence spokesperson Ndivhuwo Mabaya said as a lead department in the purchase process, defence was weighing several options including whether to lease the aircraft or to buy them outright.

Maynier said he would schedule a meeting with Defence and Military Veterans Minister Lindiwe Sisulu in order to get a full and comprehensive briefing on the planned acquisition.
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on December 05, 2013, 12:37:19 pm
Quote
Golden handshakes cost SA millions
2011-09-06 09:52

Cape Town - Municipalities across South Africa are losing millions of rands due to golden handshakes and severance packages paid out to municipal managers.

According to The Times, most of the country’s municipal managers fall victim to political interference and very few stay in office. Many have been suspended or fired, bought out of their contracts or offered settlements.

The Nelson Mandela Bay Metro has not had a single municipal manager complete their contract since the municipality was created in 2000. 

Graham Richards, a former municipal manager, received two golden handshakes, worth R6m after he was fired twice.

Tshwane and Mangaung municipalities were in the same boat with municipal managers saying there was pressure on them to grant tenders and resources to politicians. They also blamed corruption and political meddling.

An ANC spokesperson said he was unaware of complaints of political interference in municipalities while the South African Local Government Association said golden handshakes were a concern.
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on December 05, 2013, 12:38:04 pm
Quote
Fired ministers still earning big bucks
2011-11-08 08:13

Johannesburg - Sacked ministers Sicelo Shiceka and Gwen Mahlangu-Nkabinde were still earning R840 000 a year salaries as ANC MPs, Beeld newspaper reported on Tuesday.

African National Congress caucus spokesperson Moloto Mothapo told the newspaper that neither the former co-operative governance and traditional affairs minister, nor the ex-public works minister had resigned as Members of Parliament.

President Jacob Zuma sacked them on October 24.

Both still earned salaries as ANC MPs of R840 000 a year and also enjoyed privileges such as 48 paid-for inland business class plane tickets a year, and 24 plane tickets for their spouses.

Shiceka and Mahlangu-Nkabinde have been implicated in wrongdoing by Public Protector Thuli Madonsela.

Mahlangu-Nkabinde's decision to allow two controversial building leases valued at R1.6bn to go ahead, despite tender procedures not being followed and legal advice to the contrary, amounted to maladministration, according to a finding by Madonsela.

In a separate report on Shiceka, Madonsela found he had racked up more than R1m in travel costs for himself, his staff and friends in violation of the executive ethics code.

This included a trip to Switzerland to see a girlfriend jailed on drug-related charges.

Shiceka denied any wrongdoing and vowed to go to court to contest Madonsela's findings.

- SAPA
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on December 05, 2013, 12:38:45 pm
Quote
Taxpayers to pay R400m for ANC party
2011-11-10 07:48
Kaydene Jordaan, Volksblad

Bloemfontein - Taxpayers will have to pay more than R400m for the ANC's centenary celebrations in Bloemfontein.

This is on top of the R100m which the ANC had already budgeted for next year's big party.

This amount is however petty cash compared to the money that will be spent to ready infrastructure in the Free State to host the party.

- Taxpayers have already paid R150m for the Philip Sanders resort just outside the city. The resort will be the headquarters of the festivities;

- A further R35m has been budgeted to restore the Methodist church in Waaihoek, where the ANC was founded in 1912;

- R200m has been allocated to renovate the Seisa Ramabodu Stadium in Mangaung;

- The official house of Free State Premier Ace Magashule will get an upgrade costing R15m;

- Millions will also be spent to restore the historic Mapikela home, and the Winnie Mandela home in Brandfort.

Heritage

Cope's Casca Mokitlane said that as it is an ANC celebration, the organisation must use its own money to finance the party.

The ANC however feels that the centenary celebrations form part of every South African's heritage, which is why it sees no problem in spending large sums of money.

Roy Jankielsohn, leader of the DA in the Free State, said it would be highly irregular for a political party to tap into national, provincial and municipal budgets to pay for its celebrations.

"We are worried about how much money is being used for the restoration of the buildings and church, even if they could be declared national heritage sites."

Professor Andre Duvenhage, political commentator of the North West university, said such spending of taxpayers' money threatens democracy.

William Bulwane, spokesperson for Premier Magashule, did not respond.

- Volksblad
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on December 05, 2013, 12:39:33 pm
Quote
Bribery widespread, Stats SA survey finds
49 minutes ago
I-Net Bridge

Johannesburg - Citizens are being asked for  bribes by government officials for the services they are legally required to perform, Statistics SA said on Thursday.

The Pretoria-based agency released its survey Victims of Crime 2011 on Thursday.

"The bribes are mostly in the form of money, favours or a present."

The survey showed that since 2007, the proportion of people asked to pay bribes had increased significantly in relation to traffic fines.

"Comparisons with the previous survey indicated that bribes related to visiting a prison, pension, or bribes involving social welfare grant and identity document or passport applications have decreased," the agency said.

More than half (52.8%) of those who were victims of corruption were asked to pay a bribe to the traffic official to avoid traffic fines. This was most common in Gauteng (62.2%), the Western Cape (57.6%) and Eastern Cape (55.8%).

The second-highest bribe solicitation was for policing (21.4%), where 33.0% of corruption victims in the Western Cape paid bribes to the police. This was also fairly common in the Free State (28.9%) and Northern Cape (26.1%).

Statistics SA said other sectors where some bribes were solicited included driver's licences (15.9%) and job seekers (13.8%).
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on December 05, 2013, 12:41:09 pm
Quote
Cele 'golden handshakes' probed
2011-11-30 22:37

Cape Town - Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa is investigating a slew of golden handshakes worth R31m given to policemen on the watch of suspended national commissioner Bheki Cele.

Mthethwa told MPs on Wednesday that in a bid to stop long-running abuse of the police's special pensions system, he had decreed that the national commissioner may no longer award pay-outs without his approval.

"If you are applying this section 35 thing I have to know. I have to say 'yea' or 'nay'," he said, adding that the SA Police Act would soon be amended to this effect.

"The issue is that it has been a culture of section 35s being implemented without informing the executive authority... this is a huge matter, it cannot be left to the national commissioner alone," he told Parliament's portfolio committee on police.

Mthethwa's remarks follow controversy last month over a R1.1m pay-out given to former Gauteng crime intelligence chief Joey Mabasa, on top of his pension.

He was one of 19 policemen retrenched under section 35 of the act in the past two financial years. They received pay-outs totalling R31.2m.

Cele denied that his decision on Mabasa was informed by allegations linking the crime intelligence chief to Czech fraud accused Radovan Krejcir.

Instead, he told incredulous MPs last month, the police no longer had a suitable position for Mabasa because of internal restructuring.

Mthethwa said he had discussed the case with Cele and although he had been assured that Mabasa had no case to answer, he was not convinced that this applied to all the other recipients of special pensions.

He was in the process of scrutinising every successful section 35 application in recent years, not to recover the money, but to make sure people had not been released to cover up wrongdoing.

Abuse

"You can't review. It would be difficult to get the money back from them, in fact it is impossible because it is pension money.

"I have instructed the secretariat to interact with the police to make sure that indeed nobody gets away with murder.

"I wanted to understand who these people are for the sole purpose that you can't, because you have been granted section 35, get away from a criminal investigation.

He added: "What is most worrying... when we focus on those people we will be missing the point, they did not give themselves the money.

"I think for ourselves the focus has been rather, knowing not only the 20 we are talking about, but how many others, because it has been going on for years. It has been a culture that has hardened."

Mthethwa said he had been surprised to learn that deputy national commissioner Andre Pruis was among those who received a section 35 pay-out.

"What is not provided for is that when somebody is in any event going for a pension you give section 35 - that is part of abuse that is investigated."

Mthethwa said amendments to the act would be fast-tracked and should reach Cabinet within months.

"We have the final draft. I will be taking this to Cabinet next year."

He said he was also investigating some 20 cases in the past two years where people were recruited within the police after external applications were invited under section 45 of the act.

"Section 45 appointments are under investigation because it is my contention that if you apply section 45 the way it has been applied in the police currently, I need to have substance out of that.

"People would go and advertise and then appoint somebody in the police. Why not just go straight and appoint somebody in the police?"

Cele was suspended by President Jacob Zuma last month over his role in the police headquarters scandal. Mthethwa told MPs he had the fullest confidence in acting commissioner Lieutenant General Nhlanhla Mkhwanazi.

- SAPA
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on December 05, 2013, 12:41:49 pm
Quote
Moving Mr Minister - R3600 a day!
2011-12-07 07:28

Exactly what kind of car can you rent for R3600 a day - especially when Muggins Taxpayer is footing the bill? Ask minister in the presidency Collins Chabane who thought his governmental backside deserved such comfort at the expense of his constituents.

Chabane and his deputy spent almost R550 000 on car rental between March 2010 and July 2011, according to a parliamentary reply to a question from the Democratic Alliance.

SPENDING CONDONED

Which must get some kind of car because a check with Avis showed that a modest Mercedes C180 costs R860 per day and a rather more imposing Toyota Fortuner 4x4 luxury station wagon R830 per day. What WAS Chabane driving?

Chabane revealed that he spent R159 000 during this period - about R3600 in rental per day. Deputy minister Dina Pule spent R387 000, a more modest but still extreme R2500 a day.

DA public service and administration spokesman Geordin Hill-Lewis said such "reckless spending" was being condoned because of provisions in the ministerial handbook.

"This handbook allows ministers to live a life of luxury at the expense of ordinary South Africans," he said.

He said public service and administration minister Roy Padaychie should ensure long-awaited amendments to the handbook were presented and implemented immediately to curb excess spending.
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on December 05, 2013, 12:42:48 pm
Quote
Minister blows R1.7m on air travel
2011-12-08 18:00
Loyiso Sidimba, City Press

Johannesburg - Performance Monitoring and Evaluation Minister Collins Chabane spent about R1.7m in domestic and international air travel in just 15 months.

Chabane also spent R500 000 to charter two planes in April and October last year.

He revealed his air travel expenses in a parliamentary reply to Democratic Alliance MP Sandy Kalyan.

Chabane’s international travel bill, which included 33 flights, came to over R1.4m.

His domestic bill was R260 000 between April 2010 and July this year for 44 flights.

His former deputy, Dina Pule, now the communications minister, spent over R360 000 on local and international travel between November last year and July this year.

Chabane also took the presidential jet to former president Nelson Mandela’s village, Qunu, in Eastern Cape, in June last year.

He travelled in the presidential jet to Isandlwana in KwaZulu-Natal earlier this year.

The DA said ministers’ spending habits show deep disregard for the needs of the millions of South Africans living in poverty.

“Public Service and Administration Minister Roy Padayachie must ensure that the long awaited amendments to the ministerial handbook are presented and implemented as a matter of urgency,” the party said.

Chabane’s spokesperson is yet to respond to City Press’s enquiry.

» Earlier this week, the DA slammed Chabane and Pule for spending almost R550 000 on car hire between March last year and July this year.

- City Press
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: Swart Gevaar on December 05, 2013, 12:43:16 pm
 :sip:

Oh man, the more I read, the more I hate...   :angry5:
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on December 05, 2013, 12:44:31 pm
Quote
Premier pockets thousands in travel claims
2012-02-14 07:47

Johannesburg - Limpopo Premier Cassel Mathale prefers to use his own car on official trips, which is costing taxpayers thousands of rands a month, The Star reported on Tuesday.

The newspaper has reportedly seen a document from Mathale's office detailing how he cashed in on travel claims, despite having two state vehicles.

In September 2011, Mathale was paid R446 000, including his R75 000 monthly salary.

Mathale's office has bought two cars during the two years he has been premier. A BMW 750i worth R1m was purchased in April 2009, and a BMW X5 that cost the state R821 000 followed in June 2011.

According to The Star Mathale reportedly prefers using his own vehicle so he can claim travel expenses. His spokesperson Mashadi Mathosa defended Mathale's use of his personal cars.

"The ministerial handbook gives him the prerogative to use his private vehicle and claim," she was quoted as saying.

Limpopo faced a potential shortfall of R2bn at the end of the last financial year. Cabinet put the province under administration last year after it emerged that Limpopo was bankrupt and could not pay civil servants such as teachers and nurses.


- SAPA
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on December 05, 2013, 12:48:34 pm
Quote
Mathale earns millions from rental deals

May 7 2012 at 09:24am
By SAPA

Limpopo premier Cassel Mathale and chairman of the parliamentary finance committee, Thaba Mufamadi, are earning R40 million over eight years for renting one of their buildings to the Gauteng government.

The agreement with Manaka Property Investments, for the rental of Manaka House in Pretoria, was signed by the former health and social development department, Beeld newspaper reported on Monday.

The department had since been split into two, but both divisions still used the building. Manaka had amassed a property empire worth about R520 million. All the company's rental agreements came from government contracts.

Manaka's contracts with Statistics SA, the departments of water affairs and foreign affairs were signed without correct tender procedures being followed, it was reported.

Gauteng social development department spokesman Sello Mokoena confirmed the department paid a monthly rental of R468 645 (R5.6 million annually) to Manaka. With an annual rental increase of 10 percent between July 2009 and December 2016, R42 million would be paid to them.

Since the government contracts were signed, Mathale resigned as a director of Manaka, but was still a shareholder. Mufamadi, who was still a director, said he had no say in the operational running of the company.

David Lewis, head of Consumer Watch, said the situation amounted to a serious conflict of interest.

“The first question concerns the impression created when a commercial property company in which a provincial premier and the head of a parliamentary committee have interests, are found to be doing large scale commercial business with the state,” he told Beeld. – Sapa
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on December 05, 2013, 12:49:27 pm
Quote
Public sector wage bill slammed

May 7 2012 at 05:00am
By Ethel Hazelhurst
Independent Newspapers


Mike Schussler, the chief economist at Economists.co.za, speaks during the Uasa unemployment report presentation. He says the average government employee earns 34 percent more than those working in the private sector. Photo: Leon Nicholas.
South Africans are twice as likely to be employed in the public sector today than they were 40 years ago, according to Mike Schussler, the chief economist at Economists.co.za. And the salaries of the nearly 23 percent of formal sector workers employed in the public sector are much higher than those in private businesses.

Presenting trade union Uasa’s 2012 employment report in Johannesburg on Friday, Schussler said the average government salary last year was 34 percent higher than salaries in the private sector, while employees at state-owned enterprises earned about 43 percent more.

“Government salaries account for more than 12.8 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) and, together with the salaries paid by state-owned enterprises, they add up to over 14.3 percent of GDP.” He said this percentage was among the highest in the world. “Some countries with similar figures, (such as) Portugal, Greece and France, are facing debt-payment crises today.”

While public sector employment had doubled as a percentage of the total, the “productive sector has struggled for decades to create jobs”, Schussler said. As a result, fewer people were employed in manufacturing in the second quarter of last year than at any time since 1972.

The reason the private sector found it difficult to create jobs was that the cost of producing goods and services had risen too quickly, with wages of unskilled workers rocketing “about twice as quickly as in the rich world, while management and specialised skills are often underpaid”.

Schussler argued that industrial policy interventions, nationalisation or state intervention in mining “will never help the unskilled as they are simply too expensive and the lack of specialised training is locking the unemployed out of the labour market”.

He disputed the common perception of an inappropriate wage gap between high- and low-income earners.

“The old ‘working poor’ have become the reasonably comfortable class of today,” he said. And, he pointed out, if the working-class poor had remained a problem, then unions would have been “a dismal failure” over the past two decades.

To support his contention that the wage gap is overstated, he cited research based on the Patterson and Hay grading systems used to evaluate workers, which showed wages in the unskilled and semi-skilled part of the labour force were too high. And he suggested it was no coincidence that it was those types of workers who found it difficult to get work.

He argued that the biggest wage disparity was not among the employed but between the employed and the unemployed.

While the top 10 percent of earners earn about 5.7 times the wage of the lowest-paid workers, the income of those at the bottom of the earnings scale is about 19 times higher than the child grant.

And, he pointed out, more people get an income from welfare than from employment.

Schussler said, from a commercial perspective, unskilled employees were overpaid in both relative and absolute terms. “Commercial ventures need to produce goods at a profit to survive and they have now mechanised as much as they can.” This would partly explain the unemployment rate, which hovers at 25 percent.

In the report, Uasa said a starting wage subsidy could make a difference to the unemployment rate.
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on December 05, 2013, 12:50:42 pm
Quote
‘It’s a staggering sum of money’

June 13 2012 at 10:30pm
Comment on this story

Independent Newspapers
(File image) South African President Jacob Zuma (left) and his deputy, Kgalema Motlanthe. Photo: Leon Nicholas
Cape Town - Flying President Jacob Zuma and his deputy to their various engagements since they assumed office has cost taxpayers more than R210-million, former defence minister Lindiwe Sisulu has revealed.

In written responses to two Parliamentary questions, tabled on Wednesday, she said Zuma and Kgalema Motlanthe had used a total of 499 South African Air Force flights.

These included aircraft operated by the SAAF's 21 (VIP) Squadron and its reserve squadron, as well as flights chartered by the SAAF.

Of the 499 flights, Zuma used 286, at a total cost of R140,515,430; Motlanthe used 213, at a total cost of R69,746,680..

Sisulu, who on Tuesday was shifted by Zuma from defence to take over as public service and administration minister, said the figures were for the period from and including the 2009/10 financial year, up to mid-May this year.

According to her replies, a total of 53 of the 499 flights were chartered for the two men by the SAAF.

The Democratic Alliance said the figures contained in Sisulu's replies, and in her written replies to other questions dealing with VIP flights, also tabled on Wednesday, were “staggering”.

They further revealed that former president Thabo Mbeki had undertaken 39 flights, at a cost of R32,130,037, DA defence spokesperson David Maynier said in a statement.

“However, most shocking of all was that the minister (Sisulu) herself undertook 268 flights at a cost of R40,581,878.”

Of these 268 flights, 188 were on aircraft operated by the SAAF. A total of 79 flights were on aircraft operated by the SAAF reserve squadron, and one flight was chartered.

“The minister apparently regularly made use of a luxury Gulfstream executive jet operated by the SAAF reserve squadron. She blew an average of R151,424 on each flight, most of which must have been domestic flights.”

Maynier said Sisulu “seems to have completely abused her privilege to use military aircraft for official purposes”.

It was entirely possible that the figures provided did not reflect the total cost of providing VIP flights.

“I will, therefore, be submitting follow-up questions to the newly-appointed Minister of Defence and Military Veterans, Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula, probing what aircraft were used and what the breakdown of expenditure was for each of the flights undertaken by President Jacob Zuma, Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe and the minister.

“We have to get to the bottom of what is really going on in the VIP transport section of the SAAF,” Maynier said. - Sapa
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on December 05, 2013, 12:52:50 pm
Quote
R6m stolen, bank accounts ruled frozen
November 1 2012 at 11:03am
By ZELDA VENTER
Comment on this story
 
 
.
Pretoria - The Moses Kotane Local Municipality in Mogwase in the North West has turned to the Pretoria High Court in an urgent bid to have 15 bank accounts in the name of individuals and businesses frozen. This comes after more than R6 million was unlawfully drawn from the council’s bank account and deposited into their accounts.
After making the shocking discovery early last month, the municipality obtained an interim order freezing the accounts held with the four major banks in the country.
The banks were given until this week to give reasons why the accounts should not be frozen.
Judge Vivian Tlhapi on Wednesday confirmed the interim order, freezing the accounts.
She ordered that it remain in place pending finalisation of any actions by the municipality to recover the money.
The municipality’s Stephanus Piek said in court papers that certain employees were allowed access to the bank account.
The system had, however, been designed so that it was impossible for one person to capture and approve a specific transaction.
One person would capture it and another would approve it.
Those granted access to the municipality’s bank account were given passwords.
On October 1, a reconciliation of the municipality’s most recent transactions was carried out by its credit manager. It was discovered that R180 000 had been withdrawn from the bank account for no reason and transferred into another account, identified as KK Trading.
The credit manager referred the matter to another official, who immediately suspected foul play.

The municipality’s most recent bank statements were called up and it was found more than R6m had been withdrawn from its account over that weekend.
The statement reflected 15 accounts into which money had been paid. Criminal proceedings were immediately opened.

Piek said the municipality had no control over the accounts of the account holders into which the money was paid. There was also a risk that any of the account holders could have withdrawn the money if the accounts were not suspended. If that happened, not only the municipality, but also ratepayers, would suffer severe prejudice, he said.
Pretoria News
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on December 05, 2013, 12:54:49 pm
Quote
Officials live it up on the gravy train
November 5 2012 at 12:10pm
By MOLOKO MOLOTO
Comment on this story
 
 
INLSA
Treasury spokesman Jabulani Sikhakhane has said the total amount spent by all five national departments was R23m. File photo by Paballo Thekiso
Johannesburg - A whopping R12 million has been spent on hotels and travel expenses for the national intervention team in Limpopo.

The government spent this amount between December last year and September, on fewer than 30 officials, since five provincial departments were placed under national administration last year.

Separately, R11m has been paid to a consultancy firm to fix the province’s “corrupt” payment system. But the Treasury says intervention benefits override costs incurred. The intervention officials stay in luxury hotels. Their regular travel expenses between Gauteng and Limpopo are paid for by the government. The head of the team, Monde Tom, is under 24-hour police guard.

All costs exclude salaries for the officials. In the Treasury’s case, all the officials involved in the intervention full-time are employees of the Treasury in Pretoria. However, the Treasury pays Tom’s salary, even though he is not an employee.
Each of the five national departments - Treasury, Health, Public Works, Transport and Basic Education - bears its own costs.

Treasury spokesman Jabulani Sikhakhane has said the total amount spent by all five national departments was R23m. However, he pointed out that almost half was paid to the consultancy firm.

“Of the remaining amount, the bulk is accounted for by accommodation and travel expenses,” said Sikhakhane. He said that of the R12m total, the Treasury had paid just over R1m specifically for accommodation and travel expenses. The remaining R10m came from the other four national departments.
But Sikhakhane mentioned that Limpopo’s financial bleeding had been stopped and that finances had been stabilised.

The cabinet invoked section (100) (b) of the constitution after the province requested a R1 billion overdraft to pay the salaries of public servants, including nurses and doctors.

“Limpopo now has cash resources of R2.5bn versus an overdraft of R800m when the intervention began,” said Sikhakhane.

He said all legitimate claims had been paid.

Sikhakhane said the rot in the province’s payment system was the root cause of its financial woes.

The payment system relates to money transfers made by the provincial treasury to other government departments, entities and service providers. The system is also linked to the provincial revenue fund.

Sikhakhane said: “In Limpopo’s case, the provincial treasury had been so emaciated that it had become ineffective, and the provincial revenue fund had not published audited annual statements for three years.”

“The data relating to supplies of goods and services was so corrupt that the intervention team could not tell from the available information which suppliers had legitimately won the contracts.”
moloko.moloto@inl.co.za
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on December 05, 2013, 12:56:11 pm
Ok I'm running out of time - there is ahell of lot more and that was only after a few months of scanning the news.

And I suspect the reports are just scratching the surface!
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on December 05, 2013, 02:38:22 pm
Quote
The politics of effective pilfering

December 4 2013 at 09:57am

Comment on this story
IOL pn kunene

INDEPENDENT NEWSPAPERS

Patriotic Alliance president Gayton McKenzie and secretary-general Kenny Kunene during the partys launch in Paarl. Photo: Ian Landsberg

If I were a criminal in South Africa, I would see politics as a new way of doing business, says Fikile-Ntsikelelo Moya.

Pretoria - Gangland legend has it that when the FBI asked America’s most-prolific bank robber Willie Sutton why he robbed banks, he replied: “That’s where the money is.”

News that the Patriotic Alliance, a new party made up of former gangsters, a bank robber and a fraudster has been launched reminded me of Sutton’s memorable retort.

If you are looking at ways of enriching yourself quickly and easily, you have to fish where the fish are. In our country, that place is the public purse.

It is not the first time we have seen gangsters look to politics as an area of interest.

A few years ago, the northern Pretoria regional conference of the ANC was brought into disarray when two groups claiming to be the legitimate structure held separate conferences and each elected leaders.

Among those who claimed they were the legitimate ANC structure were men who had been arrested for a few heists and were themselves friends and relatives of some of the most-wanted men in the country.

For the record, I acknowledge that some of the leaders of the Patriotic Alliance have served their time and I do not have any basis to suggest they are still criminals.

I also do not wish to imply that anyone with a criminal past has nothing to contribute to the country and its politics. My Catholic upbringing taught me that every saint has a past and every sinner has a future.

But I do imagine that if I were a criminal in South Africa, I would see politics as a new way of doing business.

The business model is perfect. Sticking with Sutton’s theory, politics is where the money is. Big money.

The auditor-general’s last report told us that as much as R32 billion of state money was lost, misspent or not properly accounted for. Surely some of it was stolen. What is more, Minister of Public Service and Administration Lindiwe Sisulu admitted there had not been a single conviction of anyone guilty of flouting the Public Finance Management Act.

Now imagine what all this means to an intrepid criminal.

Thirty-two thousand million of rands available to steal if you play your cards right. And, as Sisulu has said, the chances of being caught are close to nil.

In the unlikely event you are caught, you can always accuse those who catch you of being racists (if white), ultra leftists (if black), or “pushing an agenda”, without needing to explain what that agenda is or why it should not be pushed.

If all that fails, you make an apology “to those who might have been let down” and continue with your life as before.

Unlike in your previous occupation, where Sutton said a gun was necessary because “you can’t rob a bank on charm and personality”, a criminal-turned-politician will no longer need a gun to pull a heist or spill blood.

Yes, a few people might die as a result of your actions or omissions, but the link will always be too tenuous to make you lose any sleep.

Instead of arranging for the best driver for your gang, you can get anyone with a licence to drive you as fast as they want provided they have a flashing blue light.

Another beneficial factor for a South African politician is that the issues are so clear-cut.

You merely have to show your unhappiness at the levels of unemployment, inequality and poverty.

When speaking to black people, warn them about the boers returning to take away their grant money, and when with whites, thank them for contributing to making the new South Africa what it is and spew something about Nelson Mandela’s opposition to white or black domination.

Around this time of the year, you rock up at a public meeting and mouth platitudes about the evil of hurting women and children. You can urge young people to stay in school and warn them about the futility of crime and how it might affect foreign direct investment.

In a phrase, perfect the art of talking about meat to butchers, bread to bakers and pies to both.

If you get your name in newspapers enough times and become part of the ruling party’s leadership, you could even be invited to be a shareholder in a huge company where you will earn millions of rands in exchange for having your name on the list of directors.

For this money, you do not need to threaten to separate the body and soul of anyone and merely have to make a call or two in case there are procedural or legal bottlenecks that might affect your new company’s project of making super profits.

The latest developments in the body politic suggest to me that the criminals are at last reclaiming their business from the politicians.

A patriotic citizenry should reclaim their country from both.

* Fikile-Ntsikelelo Moya is executive editor of Pretoria News.
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on December 05, 2013, 02:42:19 pm
Quote
Road to Nkandla cost taxpayers R290m

December 4 2013 at 09:38am
By LEBOGANG SEALE

Comment on this story
Copy of nm nkandla to kranskop2.JPG (38453602)

THE STAR

The road leading to President Jacob Zumas homestead at Nkandla in KwaZulu-Natal. The road, which was built by the KwaZulu-Natal government, cost R290 million. Photo: Bongiwe Mchunu

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Johannesburg - A 32km-long stretch of single-lane road linking President Jacob Zuma’s hometown of Nkandla and the neighbouring town of Kranskop cost taxpayers a whopping R290 million.

Transport Minister Dipuo Peters revealed this on Tuesday in a written reply to a parliamentary question from the IFP.

She said the P5 road, which passes through Zuma’s private home, was built by the KwaZulu-Natal provincial government.

“The national Department of Transport did not spend any funds for the construction of this road. The provincial Department of Transport spent about R290m for the construction of the specified (Nkandla to Kranskop) road,” Peters said.

This comes as concerns mount over the delays in the implementation of the much-hyped Moloto Rail Corridor, following a bus accident in Kwaggafontein that left 30 people dead last month.

The project, announced by Zuma three years ago, is to link Pretoria, Mpumalanga and Sekhukhune in Limpopo.

The Star’s sister newspaper, The Mercury, reported last year that Nkandla had substantially benefited from R582m in taxpayers’ money for the construction of two tarred roads.

The paper reported that the sprawling village of KwaNxamalala had been given two new road networks. The other road - a 53km stretch linking Nkandla to Eshowe - cost R292m to build.

The network forms parts of a project dubbed the Tale of Four Cities as it also links Ulundi, Empangeni/Richards Bay, Durban and Pietermaritzburg.

The official launch ceremony was held just a stone’s throw from Zuma’s private residence in October last year.

KwaZulu-Natal Transport MEC Willies Mchunu had also opened two pedestrian bridges across the iNsuze and Mposa rivers, linking other villages to schools which are in the greater KwaMxamalala area, at a cost of R4.5m.

The unveiling ceremony was held amid a public outcry over the government’s R206m upgrade at Zuma’s private home.

At the time of the launch, DA MPL and the party’s transport spokesman, Radley Keys, had questioned why Nkandla seemed to be getting a lot of preferential attention.

“There are vast areas of the country that do not even have gravel roads. I said clearly there is an agenda here and it could be that it is because Nkandla is home to the president,” Keys said.

The provincial government has repeatedly denied that the roads construction had anything to do with the security upgrade at Nkandla, which was being undertaken by the national Department of Public Works.

lebogang.seale@inl.co.za
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on December 05, 2013, 02:44:12 pm
Quote
No punishment for president or Cabinet

December 3 2013 at 11:30am
By Marianne Merten

Comment on this story
IOL motlanthe june 25

Independent Newspapers

Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe File photo: Tracey Adams

Cape Town -

There is no punishment for a president, cabinet member or deputy minister who is found to have transgressed the executive ethics code, which is meant to govern good conduct in public executive office.

The review aimed at fixing this continues.

But in a parliamentary reply on Monday, Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe said that in May the cabinet had decided that “in the interim... members of the executive, who violate the executive members’ ethics code face similar sanctions as those faced by members of Parliament”.

The review was expected to be completed by September, but it was delayed due to “continuing consultations with stakeholders”, said Motlanthe.

Parliamentarians can be docked up to a month’s salary as a fine, face a ban from Parliament for up to 15 days and also receive a written or public verbal reprimand in the House.

The executive ethics code was gazetted in July 2000 and is applicable to both national and provincial executives.

Like that of Parliament, it sets out annual disclosures of financial interests, including directorships and properties, and requires the declaration of gifts over a certain value.

Unlike Parliament’s code, the executive code has no sanctions.

As ministers and their deputies are also MPs, they fall under both executive and parliamentary ethics codes. But as the president resigns his seat in Parliament after being elected as head of state, the parliamentary ethics code does not apply to him.

Questions over how and who should take action if the public protector found that the president had transgressed the executive ethics code arose in October.

It emerged there was no clarity whether the government had taken steps to correct this, as called for in an April 2010 public protector report which had found that President Jacob Zuma failed to declare his financial interests within the stipulated 60 days of taking office.

Cope MP Julie Kilian, who asked the parliamentary questions of Motlanthe, on Monday said “the fact that they are dragging their feet, shows they are not serious”. Amending the executive ethics code would make sense. “It would indicate the government was serious about fighting corruption,” she added.

In the wake of the public protector’s report, speculation is continuing over how much Zuma knew of the R208 million taxpayer-funded security upgrades at his Nkandla home.

Now the public protector is due to release reports into various ministerial missteps: Agriculture Minister Tina Joemat-Pettersson is said to have transgressed on a patrol vessel tender, while former communications minister Dina Pule is facing a reprimand over her conflicts of interest.

Pule, sacked in the most recent Cabinet reshuffle, is still an MP.

Political Bureau
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on December 05, 2013, 02:46:18 pm
Quote
We had to publish Nkandla report - M&G

November 29 2013 at 02:00pm
By Sapa

Comment on this story
Copy of Copy of Copy of cz Nkandla 2012 .JPG

INDEPENDENT NEWSPAPERS

President Jacob Zuma's homestead at Nkandla in KwaZulu-Natal. Picture: Bongiwe Mchunu

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Johannesburg - In an editorial, the Mail & Guardian said it had expected fullsome criticism for its decision to run Public Protector Thuli Madonsela Public’s report into President Jacob Zuma’s Nkandla homestead but did so nonetheless because it believed there was a risk government would resort to further court action to stop Madonsela's final report into “Nkandlagate” from seeing the light.

Its two-page article cited Madonsela recommending in the provisional report that Zuma be called to account for failing to safeguard state resources and for misleading Parliament.

The president has repeatedly told the legislature that he and his family had paid for all work at Nkandla that was not related to security improvements at the estate.

Government has likewise insisted that the upgrades were essential for Zuma's security, but Madonsela found a swimming pool, visitors' centre, amphitheatre, cattle kraal, marquee area, extensive paving, and new houses for relatives included in the upgrade at “enormous cost” to the taxpayer.

Madonsela's report recommended that he must repay a “reasonable” amount of the money spent to the state, the Mail & Guardian said.

One of the key allegations listed in the report stated that costs escalated from an initial R27 million to R215m, with a further R31m in works outstanding.

The newspaper said documents dating from three years ago complained about the rising cost of the project, but it continued to escalate after Zuma's private architect was imposed as a “principal agent” on the project by the president.

It quoted Madonsela as finding in her report that this amounted to “political interference” by the president.

The newspaper said its report was based not only on Madonsela's provisional report but also on more than 12 000 pages of documents it forced the public works department to release using access-to-information legislation.

Madonsela has been locked in a tense standoff with ministers of Cabinet's security cluster, who insist there is a danger her findings will result in security arrangements becoming public and compromise the president's security.

The Mail & Guardian recalled that Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa had stated that Madonsela was not qualified to decide whether the information she brought to light might constitute a security breach, and would exceed her powers if she sought to do so.

At a briefing last week, Mthethwa and his fellow ministers in the security cluster had left open the door for further litigation against Madonsela and also reiterated that she should hand her final report to Parliament.

Democratic Alliance parliamentary leader Lindiwe Mazibuko said if Madonsela's final report matched what had been reported, her party would table a motion asking Parliament to investigate the president.

“As more and more details surrounding Nkandlagate emerge, it is becoming increasingly clear that President Zuma is at the centre of one of the biggest corruption scandals in democratic South Africa. He must be accordingly held accountable by Parliament for his actions.”

But United Democratic Movement leader Bantu Holomisa said Zuma had misled Parliament and the public, and it was not useful for Madonsela's final report to be handed to the legislature.

Holomisa said police had to conduct a parallel investigation to get to the bottom of what happened at Nkandla.

“One thing is clear; President Zuma has misled Parliament and the nation. Unfortunately this person is not accountable to the electorate, but to Luthuli House, and the African National Congress must take responsibility for the actions of their deployee.

“For us to take this matter to Parliament is not going to work and we, instead, must send the police, the Hawks and the auditors to get to the bottom of this mess,” he said.

Cope leader Mosiuoa Lekota said it backed Madonsela's reported recommendation that Zuma be made to repay money spent at Nkandla.

“The Congress of the People welcomes and supports to the hilt the Public Protector's directive that President Jacob Zuma pay back public funds which was spend on his private retreat at Nkandla,” he said.

Sapa
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: Veldbrand on December 05, 2013, 02:50:16 pm
Jeepers!! Stop now AlanWikileaksB, you're doing my hate-o-meter no good brother!!!
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on December 05, 2013, 02:57:52 pm
No point in going into denial about this stuff!

People are asking "whats wrong with etolls", well read this stuff and you decide!

Its in the press EVERY BLOODY DAY, but most people dont want to hear it!

So when they piss more of your money away tomorrow, whose fault is that really?
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: RobC on December 05, 2013, 03:13:10 pm
Jeepers!! Stop now AlanWikileaksB, you're doing my hate-o-meter no good brother!!!
:imaposer: :imaposer:
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: Laban on December 05, 2013, 04:25:26 pm



"the African National Congress must take responsibility for the actions of their deployee.".... :lol8: :imaposer:

Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: J-dog on December 06, 2013, 06:52:43 am
sickening.

the money tree is huge - fuel levies, import taxes, VAT, personal income tax, company taxes, rates, carbon tax, TV licences, vehicle tax....

(I don't think the average person thinks about all the crippling taxes one is subjected to)

BUT...

The tree is quickly being stripped bare by swarms of locusts with total impunity.

assholes. morons. gluttonous pigs. buffoons. stinking turds.

 :xxbah:
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: IceCreamMan on December 06, 2013, 06:58:34 am
so what are we doing about it ...I mean apart from saying how awful it is an how cross we all are! I could be wrong but I don't think bitching is going to change things

fact is ,voting time next year we will prolly make it into a long weekend and go away and not vote, or not be around or the queues are too long or go for a ride along the canals...

action is needed ppl ,the very least of which is to make the effort to vote!!!

But do something , apart from bitching about it I mean....
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: Bundu on December 06, 2013, 05:59:07 pm
Part 2 of the What Sanral Don't Want You To Know About E Tolling...

a look into what is coming if the existing e-tolls succeed

http://www.youtube.com/v/duM11XvTt7w
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: punisher on December 06, 2013, 10:07:38 pm
some people are doing something , like alan B is , at least he is exposing it , others refuse to comply , even in the smallest way ............... others just capitulate , and go with the flow , even willingly feeding the beast that the locust swarm is
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on December 11, 2013, 10:40:54 am
Quote
Tshwane Metro metering contract branded "blatantly corrupt"

by Chris Yelland CEng, investigative editor, EE Publishers

On 5 December 2013, Afrikaans business rights watchdog organisation, AfriSake, initiated court proceedings to prevent a contract between the City of Tshwane (Pretoria) and private service provider PEU Capital Partners (Pty) Ltd (PEU) from proceeding.

The contract, with service fees to PEU estimated to be in excess of R27-billion over the contract period, was established in May 2013, when the City of Tshwane approved a 10-year arrangement to outsource its entire electricity metering and revenue collection activity to a private company, PEU.

AfriSake claims that "PEU has no experience in the installation or management of electricity infrastructure in towns or cities", and that the outsourcing contract "is probably an example of one of the most blatantly corrupt municipal transactions to date".

It further says that PEU was granted an unsolicited bid, and that the resulting transaction is illegal in that it violates the Municipal Finance Management Act, the Municipal Systems Act, the Consumer Protection Act, the Promotion of Administrative Justice Act, and the city's own supply chain management policy.

Tshwane and PEU officials deny AfriSake's allegations.

In terms of the outsourcing contract, for a service fee from Tshwane of between 19,5% and 25% of electricity sales revenue, PEU will be responsible for all metering and electricity revenue collection on behalf of Tshwane for a period of ten years, with the option to extend the arrangement for a further three years by mutual agreement.

To do this, PEU will roll out new prepayment metering infrastructure to all of Tshwane's domestic, commercial and industrial electricity customers, including those customers presently on prepaid and credit meters. This infrastructure would include: prepaid smart meters, meter boxes, consumer interface units and appliance control units; prepaid electricity vending infrastructure and points-of-sale; a meter data communication platform and back-end system; and a contact centre.

In addition to various other claimed benefits, the primary intention of the outsourcing contract is ostensibly to reduce debtor days, improve revenue collection and reduce non-technical losses (i.e. electricity theft and non-payment). However, the initial conditions of these performance metrics prior to commencement by PEU are undefined and unstated in the contract, and there is no direct linkage of PEU's service fee to any such performance improvements.

In fact, even if there are no benefits arising or improvements in electricity revenue collection and levels of theft and non-payment resulting from the new arrangement with PEU, and the current (undefined) situation simply continues unabated, some 19,5% to 25% of Tshwane's electricity sales revenue per year will be diverted away from municipal coffers to PEU.

In public statements to justify the outsourcing contract and PEU's high service fee of 19,5% to 25% of Tshwane's electricity sales revenue, the Tshwane city manager and mayor have stated that the cost of metering and revenue collection under the previous system was 27% to 35% of electricity sales revenue.

However, a report dated 11 October 2013 on the cost of metering and revenue collection for the past three years, prepared by Tshwane's group financial services department for presentation to the council's standing committee on public accounts, indicates the cost of metering and revenue collection is 12% of electricity sales revenue. (This report was subsequently withdrawn by the Tshwane chief financial officer when it became apparent that the cost figures therein contradicted those being given by the city manager and mayor to justify the PEU contract).

Furthermore, formal documents ("D-Forms") submitted to the National Energy Regulator of South Africa (NERSA) on 31 October 2013 by the city manager, chief financial officer and senior statistician for the 2012/13 financial year state that Tshwane electricity sales revenue was R8,57-billion, the cost of electricity purchased from Eskom was R5,55-billion (i.e. 65% of sales), and the total balance of costs of running Tshwane Electricity (including metering and revenue collection) was R1,53-billion (i.e. 18% of sales), giving a surplus (profit) on the sale of electricity of R1,48-billion (i.e. 17% of sales) for the year.

As just part of the total balance of costs of running Tshwane Electricity, the cost of metering and revenue collection must be fraction of 18% of sales revenue, and it is clearly impossible, indeed absurd, that the cost of revenue collection and metering could be 27% to 35% of sales revenue, or 1,5 x to 2x the total balance of costs of running Tshwane Electricity (excluding only the cost of electricity purchases from Eskom), as is claimed by the Tshwane city manager and mayor.

Thus if one accepts the formal figures prepared for the council's standing committee on public accounts and NERSA rather than the unsubstantiated claims by the Tshwane city manager and mayor in efforts to justify the outsourcing contract and PEU's high service fee, it is apparent that far from providing significant savings, the contract will incur massive costs, without any linkage to improvements in revenue collection metrics.

In fact, the PEU service fee of 19,6% to 25% of sales revenue has the potential to wipe out the current 18% surplus on electricity sales (i.e. R1,48-billion surplus in 2012/13) that Tshwane Electricity generates to cross-subsidise other municipal services. If this were the case, to compensate, there would undoubtedly have to be a corresponding upward movement in other municipal service rates to be borne by Tshwane ratepayers.

NERSA has indicated to EE Publishers that PEU will be selling electricity to Tshwane customers in 2013/14 at the electricity tariff rates approved by NERSA for Tshwane, and the contract between the municipality and PEU is governed by the MFMA and not within NERSA's jurisdiction. NERSA further indicated that it would be looking closely at Tshwane's 2013/14 declared costs and 2014/15 tariff application to ensure that only efficiently incurred costs are passed through to the customer in the approved tariff rates for 2014/15.

The Tshwane Electricity figures prepared for NERSA and the council's standing committee on public accounts, and the figures put out by the city manager and mayor to justify the outsourcing contract and the PEU service fee, appear to be in stark contradiction, and the comments by Tshwane and PUE to this article raise more questions than answers.

However, Tshwane's executive director: strategic communication, Selby Bokaba, has since indicated: "We will not entertain further questions on this matter as AfriSake has taken us to court with the intention to interdict the implementation of the contract. Thus, the matter is sub judice".

 
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on December 12, 2013, 06:23:54 pm
Quote
Official arrested for R2m kickbacks

December 12 2013 at 05:36pm
By LEE RONDGANGER

Durban - A senior government official has been arrested for allegedly receiving more than R2 million in kickbacks from a Durban plant hire company that was awarded more than R300m in contracts to help repair KwaZulu-Natal’s ailing road infrastructure.

The arrests are the result of an 18-month investigation by the KwaZulu-Natal police anti-corruption task team, comprising the Hawks, Special Investigations Unit and Assets Forfeiture Unit.

Simphiwe Majola, 56, a regional manager in the KZN Department of Transport, appeared in the Durban Commercial Crime Court on Wednesday.

He has indicated to the court that he intends pleading not guilty to multiple counts of corruption, fraud and money laundering.

A second government employee, Sukla Pooran Maharaj, based at the provincial transport department’s offices in KwaDukuza (Stanger), is also alleged to be part of the racket.

He was arrested on Wednesday while holidaying in the Wild Coast and has appeared in the Stanger Magistrate’s Court, which granted him bail of R10 000 before adjourning the matter to December 19.

Maharaj is alleged to have received more than R300 000 in bribes from the company owners - a Durban couple - for ensuring they received the bulk of the contracts.

The two cases - and those of others that will be opened when “many more” arrests follow - are expected to be joined for trial next year.

Majola, who was in charge of awarding short-term road repair and maintenance contracts to various companies on the provincial database, is alleged to have bypassed internal procurement procedure controls that are meant to spread the contracts to various small contractors, and awarded the bulk of the work to the company owned by the Durban couple.

The couple, who are believed to be in Johannesburg, have apparently arranged to hand themselves to police tomorrow.

Their names are known to the Daily News and will be revealed when they appear in court.

The contracts awarded were for the hire of plant equipment used in the repair of roads.

They were also part of the provincial government’s plan to empower emerging civil contractors.

Police are also probing R200m worth of contracts for the department awarded to two other companies linked to the businessman.

The investigation, led by Captain Fana Khawula, uncovered that between 2007 and last year the businessman allegedly:

* Bought Majola a top-of-the-range Mercedes-Benz C280 worth more than R430 000.

* Installed a pool at his Ashburton home in Pietermaritzburg for R83 072.

* Paid a R1.5m deposit for Majola to buy a dairy farm in Port Shepstone, and

* Paid R146 308 in architect’s fees for renovations to his home.

The renovations to the home did not go ahead because Majola’s neighbours objected.

During his bail application on Wednesday, Majola said he had been employed by the Department of Transport since 1994 and earned a salary of R47 000 a month.

He said he was not a flight risk and intended to plead not guilty to the charges.

He said he had been aware of the investigation since last year.

The court accepted Majola’s petition and granted him bail of R50 000. The case was adjourned to March 18.

According to sources with intimate knowledge of the probe, the investigation into Majola began after a department employee grew suspicious of how he could afford such an expensive car.

The employee did further checks on the vehicle and discovered it was registered in the name of a Durban businessman who provided services to the department.

According to a forensic report commissioned by the Department of Treasury, the employee reported the matter to the Special Investigations Unit.

The Daily News is in possession of the forensic report.

Police allege that in 2007 a company owned by the couple had purchased the Mercedes-Benz from a dealership in uMhlanga and had given it to Majola in 2008.

The vehicle was paid off in three instalments - R5 000, R300 000 and R125 650 - between August and December 2007.

According to the State’s charge sheet handed to the court on Wednesday, Majola and the businessman went to great lengths to conceal how the vehicle was purchased, but not before the colleague had investigated.

The vehicle, which was originally registered in the businessman’s name, was transferred into the name of a Gauteng car dealership owned by a Mr Padaychee who is an alleged associate of the businessman, in July 2008.

The following month the vehicle was transferred from the Gauteng dealership to Majola.

The forensic report alleges that Majola went against department protocol by approving the hire of the plant equipment for the businessman beyond the minimum 60 days.

In several incidents, a highly placed source said, the businessman charged the department for use of an earth-moving machine in Port Shepstone and Stanger for the same day, which resulted in payments exceeding R1.7m.

“This is just the tip of the iceberg,” a police source said on Wednesday.

“We plan to arrest many more people for this. We expect at least 20 arrests.”

Daily News
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on December 19, 2013, 06:56:43 am
Quote
State bungles R52m confiscation case

December 17 2013 at 02:42pm
By NOELENE BARBEAU

Comment on this story
Copy of ND Ishwar 1 (37659953) (37668935)

INLSA

Ishwar Ramlutchman appears at the Commercial Crimes Court. Picture: Zanele Zulu

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    Fraudster’s assets can’t be seized

Durban - The State should have conducted an investigation to determine the profit made by a convicted Richards Bay businessman from the R52 million government contract he was awarded with fraudulent documents.

Durban Commercial Crime Court acting magistrate, Nalini Govender, dismissed the State’s application for a confiscation order against Ishwarlall Ramlutchman.

Ramlutchman had pleaded guilty, in September, to defrauding the Department of Public Works by tendering for contracts using false documents.

Soon afterwards, the Assets Forfeiture Unit had restrained his assets. The State had also applied for a confiscation order, seeking a return of the R52m, when he was sentenced.

Last week, the acting magistrate dismissed the State’s application to obtain a confiscation order, saying the hurdle in the State’s case was proving the value of Ramlutchman’s profit from these tenders, which was not determined.

The State was requesting the return of the contract value. However, Govender said there was no case law to refer to on the return of a contract value, but instead on the return of profit.

Last month, Ramlutchman was fined R500 000 or 10 years’ imprisonment and received two five-year suspended sentences on 21 fraud charges and one of corruption. He had pleaded guilty to, through his company AC Industrial, submitting false documents to the Construction Industry Development Board to improve the firm’s grading to bid for government tenders.

In court papers for the confiscation proceedings, the Asset Forfeiture Unit’s forensic investigator, Akbar Ally, said Ramlutchman’s assets did not satisfy the confiscation amount of R52m as they were valued at about R10m.

 

Ramlutchman’s defence had argued that the businessman’s assets had dropped. According to court papers, Ramlutchman said the provincial Department of Public Works received full value for the R52m paid to him.

He argued for the confiscation to be dismissed, saying in 2009 it had been discovered his registration and grading with the construction board was irregular and it had not properly qualified him for the Public Works contracts.

He said he was internally prosecuted by the construction board and received a sanction, which included a condition allowing him to continue with the projects.

noelene.barbeau@inl.co.za

Daily News
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on December 19, 2013, 06:57:42 am
Quote
Tshwane metro duo charged with corruption

December 18 2013 at 11:44am
By LALI VAN ZUYDAM

Comment on this story
IOL pic dec2 somalia pirates gavel

sxc.hu

Pretoria - In a case of alleged corruption in the City of Tshwane, two men - a municipal official and an employee of a metro contractor - have been accused of attempting to solicit a bribe from a businessman.

Mongamola Ramaphakela, 24, and Matsobane Masekela, 34, appeared in the Specialised Commercial Crimes Court on Tuesday on charges of corruption after allegedly offering to make the businessman’s electricity bill of more than R1.3 million “go away” if he paid them R400 000.

The city official is an administrative officer and the other man, who is from Thembisa, works for a contractor to the metro, cutting off the electricity supply to residents and business people who fail to pay their accounts.

The men allegedly approached the businessman, whose identity is known to the Pretoria News, and offered their “assistance” with his arrears. He alleges they asked him to pay them to make his account “disappear” from the system.

The businessman agreed to meet the accused with R120 000 of the total amount they had agreed on and called the Hawks to set a trap.

When the businessman handed over the money, the Hawks arrested the two men on Friday.

Metro spokesman Selby Bokaba said it was too soon to say whether Masekela would be suspended as he had been arrested at the weekend.

However, the metro could serve Masekela with an intention to suspend letter, to which he would have to respond giving reasons why he believed he should not be suspended.

In the case of Ramaphakela, the city would consider its options in relation to the contractor, Bokaba said.

“Anything that directly or indirectly impacts on the good image of the city is something that we are worried about. We will look into the matter within the confines of the law,” Bokaba said.

The matter was postponed to February for further investigation after the accused were granted bail of R3 000 each.

Both men said they would plead not guilty to the charges and that they would stand trial.

They said they were the sole breadwinners in their families and had children to support.

The accused may not contact the City of Tshwane’s witnesses in the case, they must report to their local police station three times a week and they may not apply for travel documents while their trial is under way.

Also, they are not allowed to move without permission from the residential addresses they have given.

It has not yet been determined whether the men were working as part of a syndicate.

In October, the metro showed its determination to clamp down on corruption when 12 employees in the horticulture department were fired for fuel theft over three months. The fuel was valued at more than R800 000.

An additional 16 employees were found guilty of similar offences. A number of officials resigned after being caught out.

“City management has vowed to intensify its clampdown on corrupt employees in a quest to weed out criminality in its midst,” Bokaba said.

The corruption case is one of many involving municipal employees this year. Last month, two municipal workers were arrested while selling refuse bags to a Sunnyside businessman for R200

.

lali.vanzuydam@inl.co.za

Pretoria News
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: Bundu on December 19, 2013, 01:24:06 pm
gotta hate the incompetent thieving bastards  :xxbah:
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on December 19, 2013, 05:04:57 pm
Quote
‘Zuma’s neighbours a security threat’

December 19 2013 at 12:57pm
By Sapa

Comment on this story
nkandla apr 29

Independent Newspapers

President Jacob Zuma's home in Nkandla File photo: Doctor Ngcobo

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Pretoria - Families neighbouring President Jacob Zuma's private Nkandla homestead in KwaZulu-Natal were moved because they posed a security threat, Public Works Minister Thulas Nxesi said on Thursday.

It was up to his department to implement the security recommendations of the security cluster of ministers, he told journalists in Pretoria.

“The neighbouring families had to be relocated as they were identified as a security risk to have them within the high-security zone,” he said at the release of a task team report into the over R206 million upgrade to Zuma's home.

“A feature known as the chicken run was constructed within the cattle kraal. It was created as a replacement to a number of building block structures that were scattered around some of the main dwellings which were obstructions and potential hiding areas for intruders.”

Nxesi said allegations that Zuma used state resources to build and upgrade the homestead were unfounded.

“As it will be shown in the findings of the task team report, no state funds were used to build the president's private residence,” he said.

“The requirement to provide security for presidents, both sitting and retired, remains the responsibility of government. The Ministerial Handbook did not adequately address security around the head of state, deputy president and their families.”

Regarding the controversial tuck shop, among other things, Nxesi said the state was duty-bound to construct it, after relocating it.

“The tuck shop existed long before the president was inaugurated and was relocated within the three hectare land of the president.

“Due to the security risk posed by the movement of people [customers], the tuck shop had to be relocated from within the premises and erected at the perimeter of the premises,” said Nxesi. - Sapa
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on December 23, 2013, 08:08:17 am
Quote
‘Poisoned’ tenders cancelled

December 22 2013 at 07:38am
By Wiseman Khuzwayo

Comment on this story
Copy of sa pilg (38856317)

Tiro Ramatlhatse

The troubled Pilgrims Rest community, including residents and business owners are determined to stop the provincial government from taking over their businesses. Photo: Tiro Ramatlhatse

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    Judge slams Pilgrims Rest tenders

Johannesburg - The Mpumalanga department of public works acted unlawfully and improperly in the awarding of tenders for shop leases in Pilgrims Rest, and the process was characterised by gross irregularities and maladministration, Thuli Madonsela, the Public Protector, has found.

The report, entitled “Poisoned Processes”, was released on Thursday night after an investigation lasting more than a year. It was due to be released two weeks ago but was delayed due to “quality assurance processes”.

It says the head of department must cancel the awarding of the contracts for the new shop leases and embark on a new procurement process.

Pilgrims Rest, a national heritage and a tourist attraction, is peculiarly owned by the department. On June 30, 2012, it issued eviction notices to 17 out of 22 business tenants, who had to vacate their premises by the end of July 2012.

The history of the department owning this tiny village with only one main road is very odd. The history of Pilgrims Rest dates back to the 1800s, when it was a gold mining town. At some stage when the mining activity stopped, the Transvaal Provincial Administration (TPA) took over from the mining company Barlow Rand.

When the TPA was dissolved in 1994, the town was handed over to the department. It has a mandate to provide, manage and maintain Pilgrims Rest, which was declared a heritage site and a national monument in 1986.

It is responsible for the management of the town, as well as the billing on water, electricity, refuse removal, management of businesses and lease agreements.

The eviction orders followed a tender process conducted by the department for the renewal of tenders, which it said was based on the need for transformation.

Susan Patricia Khoza’s Matletle Construction and Projects company was awarded a tender to rent five business premises, while Rachel Tsakane Khoza’s Timbhulu Construction and Projects was awarded a tender to rent three business premises.

The losing bidders obtained an interdict at the North Gauteng High Court against the Mpumalanga government, which was given two months to produce the documents upon which basis the tenders were awarded for a judicial review by the court.

During the hearing, Judge Stanley Makgoba asked the advocate for the evictees: “This is strange to me. How can a provincial department own a town?”

The government did not comply with the court order. Afrikaans pressure group Afrisake is now funding an application by the evictees to have the interdict extended. The public protector’s report found that the bid specification committee was without the requisite 60 percent quorum.

The report says this committee gave a high score for price to a bidder whose bid price was one of the lowest. “The bid was adjudicated and scored on the understanding of its rent offer being R19 000, when in fact it was R10 416,” it says. Therefore, fraud is suspected.

It says:

* No due diligence exercise was carried out to assess the functionality and sustainability of businesses considered for leases;

* Evaluation criteria changed from 90:10 to 80:20 for some of the tenders, with dubious reasons given for such a change and how the change was processed; and

* No proper records were kept, resulting in a changing narrative given during the investigation on issues such as why the evaluation criteria changed for some of the tenders.

Madonsela says the department must ensure that owners of current businesses that are not successful in the new bidding process are given adequate vacation notices, which should not be less than three months.

The MEC must within 30 days from the date of the report submit an implementation plan of the remedial action to Madonsela and 21 days thereafter submit a progress report.

Sharon Paterson, who owns two businesses in Pilgrims Rest – the Pantry Shop, which sells pastries and doubles up as a licensed restaurant, and Ponieskrantz Arts and Crafts, said six businesses had already closed because of the uncertainty over the leases.

“Opening up a new procurement process could take years, and at the end of the day you do not get your lease renewed. They should just renew the leases and open up the bidding process on the empty buildings,” she added.

Business Report
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: knightrat on December 23, 2013, 08:50:37 am
Lost the article now  :xxbah: saw it on news 24 but I see government has reversed its ruling about buying alcohol and revoking government credit cards! Just in time for Christmas... lol
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on December 24, 2013, 09:17:07 am
Quote
Taxpayers pay as officials fight over contract

December 23 2013 at 10:50am
By MOLOKO MOLOTO

Comment on this story
Tlhalefi Mashamaite dec 23

SUPPLIED

Mogalakwena Municipality Mayor Tlhalefi Mashamaite

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Johannesburg - A rowdy clash involving the mayor and municipal manager of Limpopo’s Mogalakwena municipality continues - at the public’s expense.

Mayor Tlhalefi Mashamaite and manager William Kekana recently appointed bodyguards to protect themselves against one another.

Claiming their lives were in danger, the two officials of the ANC-controlled municipality in Mokopane want the council to pay for services provided by their personal protectors.

This is in addition to 24-hour security provided by the municipality at their homes.

Last week, Kekana was prevented from entering the council premises by the mayor’s bodyguards.

A clash ensued, with Kekana’s protectors and a group of community members sympathetic to him wrestling with Mashamaite’s “private army” so that Kekana could enter the premises.

At the centre of the conflict is the municipal manager’s disputed employment contract.

Kekana’s contract was controversially renewed for five years by the previous council whose term ended in 2011.

 

The contractual dispute saw Kekana being suspended in July pending the resolution of the matter, but a group of 24 ANC councillors voted with opposition members to reinstate him.

That resolution was made an order of court in October, and Kekana returned to office. But the mayor, chief whip David Langa and a faction of ANC councillors disputing Kekana’s contract had boycotted October’s council sitting that reinstated Kekana.

 

This led to legal action challenging the ruling.

On December 13, High Court Judge Jody Kollapen declared Kekana’s contract invalid and said the council’s October resolution to reinstate him was unlawful.

The council is now to appeal the judge’s ruling.

moloko.moloto@inl.co.za

The Star
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on January 08, 2014, 12:17:59 pm
Quote
Waste of public funds disturbing - Apac

January 8 2014 at 05:59am
By SAPA

Comment on this story
IOL pic jan7 rand notes



ohannesburg - The disregard shown for the public sector austerity measures announced by Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan was disturbing, the Association of Public Accounts Committees (Apac) said on Tuesday.

It was reported on Sunday that North West premier Thandi Modise acquired a new BMW 750i at a cost of R1.3 million, despite a ban on extravagant spending on luxury vehicles.

"Minister Gordhan was very clear in urging the public sector to exercise prudence in dealing with public funds," Apac secretary Hlomane Chauke said in a statement.

"We call upon law enforcement agencies in provinces to exercise effective oversight and investigate recent media allegations of political leaders buying lavish cars with state funds," he said.

According to the Sunday Times, Modise's spokesman Lesiba Kgwele said the vehicle was not acquired in defiance of a Cabinet directive.

He reportedly told the newspaper that suggestions that the purchase was a snub of Gordhan's call for cost-cutting were disingenuous.

Kgwele said the official vehicle used by Modise's predecessor had travelled more than the suggested maximum of 120 000km, and was constantly breaking down and compromising Modise's security.

Chauke said all ministers, premiers, MECs, mayors and government departments should heed Gordhan's call to exercise prudence when spending public funds.

"Apac further calls upon on public accounts committees and municipal public accounts committees to leave no stone unturned in their efforts to ensure that public entities comply with minister Gordhan's prescripts," he said. - Sapa
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on January 08, 2014, 12:25:05 pm
Quote
Taxpayers foot bill for Nkandla power

January 8 2014 at 08:10am
By Mpume Madlala



Independent Newspapers


Durban - Taxpayers were footing President Jacob Zuma’s electricity bill at his private home in Nkandla, it emerged on Tuesday in response to a parliamentary question posed by the DA.

While the Department of Public Works confirmed in a written reply that it was carrying the bill in order to “pay for aspects related to security”, the DA said the department failed to provide details on exactly how much the bills added up to.

Public Works spokesman Thami Mchunu also confirmed on Tuesday night that the department was paying the president’s bill. “The department is paying for the electricity to provide for aspects relating to security,” he said, without elaborating further.

DA Public Works spokeswoman Anchen Dreyer voiced disappointment over the reply to her parliamentary question.

“The details of how much has been spent thus far were not provided in the reply, despite it being clearly asked for.

“I will resubmit the question in the National Assembly requesting the full details,” she said.

If she still did not get the information within 10 parliamentary working days, as the rules of Parliament required, Dreyer said she would submit an application in terms of the Promotion of Access to Information Act for all the electricity costs and related documents.

“Already South Africans have had to fork out an exorbitant R200 million to upgrade President Zuma’s private residence in Nkandla. We have been told, time and time again, that this is for his ‘security’. Yet, from cattle kraals to ‘fire pools’, we continue to learn of line items which have absolutely nothing to do with protecting the president,” she said.

Dreyer said the latest revelation was a slap in the face for so many South Africans who had yet to receive access to electricity, or who battled each month to pay their bills.

She also questioned why Zuma deserved “special treatment” at his private residence – when he already had four state-provided residences across the country.

The IFP’s national spokesman, Blessed Gwala, said: “The ANC will die a natural death without corruption. The fraud of the ANC disgusts me, more so because it is happening right under the nose of the provincial premier and the president himself. I am really not surprised and I know more is still going to come out.”

National ANC spokesman Jackson Mthembu referred queries to the Department of Public Works.

“We don’t know anything about it. The right people who will respond intelligently on the matter will be the department,” he said.

The Mercury
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: McSack on January 08, 2014, 01:09:17 pm
Quote
National ANC spokesman Jackson Mthembu referred queries to the Department of Public Works.

“We don’t know anything about it. The right people who will respond intelligently on the matter will be the department,” he said.
:imaposer:
not fsking likely
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on January 15, 2014, 08:08:32 am
Quote
R10m car rental scandal

January 14 2014 at 07:49am
By BABALO NDENZE AND STAFF REPORTERS



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Johannesburg - In the Department of Social Development, economising means spending an amount of R15 143.82 on a single day’s hire of an Audi Q3 for the minister.

Or R43 203 on three days’ travel in an Audi Q7.

Or R22 575 on three days in a Mercedes S-Class.

Or about R30 000 on two Audi Q7s hired for the same four days travel for the same minister.

Or nearly R46 000 for two days in a BMW X5 for a deputy minister.

This is how the Social Development Department “reduced” spending on travel after promising to do following the urging of Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan.

The figures emerged among parliamentary replies to questions by the DA to various ministries on car hire spending.

DA transport spokesman Ian Ollis said R1.3 million was spent by the ministries of Social Development, Public Enterprises and Correctional Services between January 2012 and March last year.

This brings the total spent on vehicle rentals by President Jacob Zuma’s cabinet and deputy ministers to R10.8 million in just over a year.

Some of the replies give slightly different periods for the spending.

The Social Development Ministry was the biggest spender of the three to most recently reply, spending R785 728 between the minister and deputy minister. These figures were from January 2012 to April 2013 for the minister, and to June 2013 for the deputy.

That ministry’s car hire could have paid for a year’s worth of monthly pensions for 51 war veterans. The department budgeted to pay 477 veterans last year.

In February last year, in the 2013/14 Budget, the ministry promised to review its policies on travel, accommodation, venues and communication “to ensure that spending on these non-core service delivery items is reduced” after cutting R62m from spending on goods and services.

Much of the spending is before then; however, the ministry’s car hire since February last year listed six trips for a total of 16 days and a total cost of R120 510, or nearly R32 per kilometre.

Before that promised review, Social Development Minister Bathabile Dlamini hired an Audi Q7 for two weeks at R100 504 and also for 21 days at a cost of R80 419.

Dlamini’s spokeswoman, Lumka Oliphant, said there were a number of reasons why the minister had the biggest bill out of all ministers in the cabinet.

“Firstly, we say as our pay-off line, siyaya emphakathini njalo (we go to communities regularly). Secondly, it’s batho pele, or people first. The nature of the work in Social Development is working for the poor. The minister only has cars in Cape Town and Gauteng and has no cars in other provinces. She has gone to far-flung areas in all corners of the country,” said Oliphant.

She said an advertisement in a newspaper could cost as much as R500 000 – far more expensive than community outreach.

“And you’ll find that there are far fewer readers (of newspapers). The minister is talking to people, that’s why,” said Oliphant.

Public Enterprises Minister Malusi Gigaba spent R283 166 on hired vehicles.

Minister of Correctional Services S’bu Ndebele and his deputy Ngoako Ramatlhodi spent a total of R126 702.

Gigaba noted in his response that the general picture about car rentals is that rates vary from one car rental company to the other, “and huge delivery and collecting fees are also charged”.

“These fees are charged if, for example, a car had to be taken to a far-off small town airport and be collected thereafter due to unavailability of such cars in those areas.

“Kilometres travelled also plays a major factor in the amount charged, and can be charged from R8 per km to R15 or more per km,” said Gigaba.

Ollis said that in one instance, Gigaba rented a vehicle for just one kilometre and paid R2 381.79 for the trip.

“Although the minister argues that the rental was later cancelled, it remains unacceptable that R2 381.79 was paid for a car that was not used,” said Ollis.

 

“When he came into office in 2009, President Zuma waxed lyrical about ensuring a reduction of wasteful expenditure,” he added.

But the continued splurging by members of Zuma’s cabinet “is indicative of a government that is not committed to cutting unnecessary costs”.

Politcal Bureau
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on January 15, 2014, 08:32:29 am
Quote
Zuma and his clan need to be told: NO

January 14 2014 at 07:37pm

Comment on this story
IOL PN zuma1

Reuters



The electorate should give the ANC a stern message at the polls this year – that corruption and enrichment of hangers-on cannot be tolerated, says Max du Preez.

Guess which exemplary ANC leader uttered these words at the ANC rally at Mbombela on Saturday? “The ANC is very clear that actions that bring our organisation into disrepute will not be tolerated and every ANC member should conduct himself or herself in a manner that is consistent with the core values and traditions of our movement.”

Let me give you some clues.

The speaker is the same man who has, according to court evidence, received vast amounts of money from a shady businessman in exchange for political favours. The businessman went to jail, but the politician, Jacob Gedleyihlekisa Zuma, didn’t because the caretaker head of the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA), Mkotedi Mpshe, dropped the more than 700 charges of corruption, racketeering and fraud against him.

This decision was against the advice of the senior staff and legal advisers of the NPA, who described it as a purely political rather than legal decision. Mpshe said he had listened to secret tapes of phone conversations indicating possible political interference with the prosecution.

Zuma has used vast amounts of state funds to stop those tape recordings being made public. Mpshe was promoted to judge soon after he dropped the charges.

Zuma wasn’t a wealthy man when he accepted the dirty money from the jailed business associate. But his fortunes and that of his family and clan improved spectacularly after he became leader of the ANC at the Polokwane congress. A mere six years after this event there were more Zuma millionaires than any others in the country sharing a surname. A Young Communist Party leader called it Zuma Economic Empowerment.

Fifteen of Zuma’s close family members, including some of his children, are wealthy business people and have some 140 directorships or memberships of close corporations between them.

Zuma Incorporated’s fortunes soared further when three shrewd brothers from India, Atul, Rajesh and Ajay Gupta, realised that the new South African president would be amenable to a mutually beneficial relationship. His children Duduzile and Duduzane are top executives in the Gupta empire.

No wonder then that the Guptas were allowed to use Waterkloof Air Base as a private playground to fly in their guests for a family wedding last year. Officials who were told this was the wish of “Number One” were afterwards the only ones held accountable.

We have strong reasons to believe that Zuma actually knew what the Public Works Department was building for him at his private villa (called the Corruption Palace by Julius Malema) at Nkandla and that it was going to cost more than R200 million of taxpayers’ money.

Now let’s throw in Zuma’s much-publicised sexual adventures with the young daughters of two of his friends. One was HIV positive and accused Zuma of raping her, the other fell pregnant.

Consider all the above and then ask the question: was this conduct “consistent with the core values and traditions of our movement”? Has Zuma not, more than anyone else in the senior echelons of the ANC, brought “the organisation into disrepute”?

How does the ANC expect the people of South Africa to believe them that it is tough on corruption and will instill discipline in its members with that kind of leader – a leader shielded and defended tirelessly by the senior leadership?

When I saw the headline in The Sunday Independent, “Zuma Warns Rotten Cadres”, I simply chuckled.

Because I remembered that the leader of the ANC in the Northern Cape, John Block, has been on trial for a long time on charges of corruption, money-laundering and racketeering and had assets worth more than R20 million frozen by the Asset Forfeiture Unit. This did not affect his standing in the ANC or the provincial government.

I also remembered how the former ANC chief whip, Tony Yengeni, was accompanied to prison by a cheering commando of ANC luminaries after he had lied to Parliament about a transaction related to the arms deal and was sentenced to four years in jail. He was involved in several more scandals after he came out of jail, yet he is still a member of the national executive of the party and was at one stage head of the ANC’s political school.

I also remembered how the former communications minister, Dina Pule, was found guilty of lying to Parliament about her boyfriend’s suspect financial dealings with her department, but she wasn’t kicked out of Parliament or disciplined by the party.

So Jacob Zuma was actually telling the party faithful at the Mbombela Stadium on the weekend: “If you’re not me or in my inner circle, then don’t be corrupt or bring the ANC into disrepute. Do as we say, not as we do.”

The ANC leadership deserves to be given a stern message by the electorate.

* Max du Preez is an author and columnist.

** The views expressed here do not necessarily reflect those of Indepent Newspapers.

Pretoria News
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on January 15, 2014, 08:35:07 am
Quote
Two in dock for R40m public works lease scam

January 15 2014 at 06:32am
By SAPA

Comment on this story
IOL jan 3 gavel light wood [1]

sxc.hu

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    R40m lease scam probed

 

Johannesburg - A businessman and a former public works department senior official accused of money laundering and corruption are expected to appear in the Johannesburg Magistrate's Court on Wednesday.

Businessman Sayed Hoosen Mia and former senior administrator Desmond Simamane would appear for a trial date to be set.

The two were allegedly involved in a lease scam involving R40 million.

The scam led to the department paying R40 million for the lease of six Johannesburg buildings from Mia. Despite the money being paid, the buildings were never used.

Simamane allegedly accepted bribes from Mia in exchange for recommending his companies for lease contracts for office space for other national government departments.

He allegedly accepted a Nissan Hardbody bakkie, worth R156 400, and use of a BMW 525, worth R566 250, from Mia. He also allegedly received payments of R640 500 via his football club's bank account.

Simamane was granted R5 000 bail and Mia R10 000 bail. - Sapa
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on February 06, 2014, 03:19:46 pm
Quote
Civil servants’ pay rises, regardless

February 6 2014 at 11:44am


INDEPENDENT NEWSPAPERS



In raising pay already excessive against independent counsel, Zuma undermines our constitution, writes Helen Zille.

Within a context of rampant corruption, the recent round of salary increases for senior public servants – which was against the recommendation of the Independent Commission for the Remuneration of Public Office Bearers – hardly warranted a mention in the media. Yet there are crucial issues of principle at play.

The commission exists for an important reason: to avoid the conflict of interest that would arise should politicians determine their own salaries. Even though President Jacob Zuma makes the final legal determination, we believe it undermines the spirit of the constitution to ignore the commission’s recommendations.

Late last year, December 19, the commission recommended the total remuneration of people earning below R500 000 per year be increased by 7 percent, while those earning between R500 000 and R800 000 get 5 percent increases. Those earning between R800 000 and R1 million per annum should get an increase of 4 percent. Those earning above R1m should not get an increase.

This sliding scale seemed perfectly logical and appropriate in a context where we are trying to tackle extreme inequality. But whatever one may think of the proposal, I believe it is incumbent on Zuma to accept it, in order to avoid the “conflict of interest” trap.

He rejected it, opting instead for a 5 percent “across-the-board” increase. This equates to an estimated additional cost to the taxpayer of R45m for top politicians. He, however, announced he would forego the increase. This gesture does not enable him to escape his conflict of interest problem, because he has, against the commission’s advice, remunerated the insider network that keeps him in power. The unspoken deal is: they look after him and he looks after them.

Fortunately, the constitution requires premiers to consider the commission’s recommendations and make a determination for provinces.

The DA believes that independent commissions have a mandate to fulfil. The Western Cape cabinet, therefore, at its January 23 meeting, accepted the commission’s recommendation that office bearings earning over R1m a year should get no increase. This unanimous decision took a minute to make. A simple matter. But as usual, in government, complications followed.

Legally, the process should work like this: the national government must give provincial premiers 30 days after the president’s proclamation to make a determination for office bearers in their provinces. That period ends on February 7. But long before this period had lapsed, and without consultation, the national government implemented Zuma’s proclaimed salary increases across all provinces. Our view was not taken into account or even sought as required by law. We now have to reverse the payments, a complex, difficult and expensive process.

Zuma simply refuses to allow our constitutional checks and balances to operate. He believes that powerful politicians should dictate to them, not the other way around. The essence of democracy is not the concentration of power in political leadership.

The essence of democracy lies in independent and strong institutions that prevent power abuse. The Commission for the Remuneration of Public Office Bearers should be such an institution. By rejecting its recommendations, Zuma is continuing his well-established habit of gutting independent institutions, from the National Prosecuting Authority to the Judicial Service Commission, so that he can wield unfettered power.

That is the point that advocate Glynnis Breytenbach is making by joining the DA. She is entering politics to fight for the independence of these institutions, not to control them.

Another thing: why does Zuma presume that every senior politician will simply take any increase they can get?

Public service salaries in South Africa today are on par with rich countries rather than with comparable emerging markets. With South Africa’s thin tax crust, burgeoning public debt and widespread poverty, this is to defy our economic reality.

At the apex of a weak and corrupt state, Zuma earns more in real terms than his British and French counterparts – two of the wealthiest countries in the world.

Studies show that many public servants salaries across the board are outpacing their counterparts in the private sector. Others indicate that the cost of the public service as a percentage of gross domestic product is higher than Germany and Scandinavia. The salaries of South Africa’s nine premiers are within the US dollar-for-dollar range of the five top paid governors of the US, the world’s biggest economy.

Politicians’ sense of entitlement has stirred a generalised anger, crystallised in the public fury with Nkandla.

And there is another point of which we dare not lose sight. As the famous jurist, Louis Brandeis said: “We may have democracy, or we may have wealth concentrated in the hands of the few. But we cannot have both.”

We need a president and a government that makes us feel that we are all in this battle together.

* Helen Zille is the leader of the DA and Western Cape premier.

** The views expressed here are not necessarily those of Independent Newspapers.
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on March 28, 2014, 12:42:39 pm
Quote
R3.2m for bodyguards in one month

March 26 2014 at 08:12pm
By Mpume Madlala

Durban - Durban’s metro police should have trained VIP police to serve as bodyguards for councillors who need protection.

This was the call from opposition parties on Tuesday after it emerged that the municipality had spent R3.2 million in January on bodyguards for 22 councillors whose lives were considered to be at risk.

DA caucus leader Zwakele Mncwango believed that the amount was too much for this service, saying that it was theft of ratepayers’ money.

“These are shockingly inflated rates for these services,” he said.

The bodyguards are for 19 ANC councillors and three from the NFP.

“Each councillor has a bodyguard at R71 000 a month, a rented car at R22 000 a month and a driver at R35 000 a month. Some of the bodyguards cost R106 000 a month,” he said.

He wanted to know why the municipality was spending millions for bodyguards when it had a metro police department. “If such security is warranted, the DA calls on the city to incorporate these VIP protection staffers into its metro police station as a cost-saving measure,” he said.

IFP caucus leader Mdu Nkosi said that having bodyguards for councillors who were at risk was necessary, but there were cheaper options.

“We have a metro police department, so why can’t we train a number of our policemen to work as bodyguards when needed?” he asked.

The problem with contracts was that the prices were always inflated, he said.

“I find it hard to believe that so much money has been spent on just 22 bodyguards. It also needs to be investigated why these councillors need them because it appears that some just want them for show,” he said.

MF councillor Patrick Pillay agreed that an in-house VIP unit within the metro police would work best.

The Speaker for eThekwini, Logie Naidoo, said that the safety of municipal councillors was a sensitive matter and should not be politicised.

“The decision to provide councillors with security is not taken lightly, but is based on threat analysis reports from the SAPS crime intelligence unit and in some cases the national intelligence unit,” he said.

He denied that costs for guards were inflated, saying they were inclusive of vehicle costs.

“In some instances, the council provides static guards either at a councillor’s home or office. The level of security provided is based on the threat analysis. This is the reason for variance in costs,” he said.

Naidoo said the security needs analysis applied to all political parties and was reviewed when necessary.

The Mercury
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on July 25, 2014, 12:18:21 pm
Quote
Official probed for R1.6bn graft

July 25 2014 at 11:31am
By Sapa


Johannesburg - The Hawks on Friday confirmed they are investigating a government official for corruption involving R1.6 billion.

“There is no formal charge at the moment, but we can confirm that a preservation order was applied for in the high court,” Captain Paul Ramaloko said. “Most of this matter is before court.”

The corruption was allegedly committed during the official's term of office. Ramaloko declined to provide details, including the official's name.

Special Investigating Unit (SIU) spokesman Boy Ndala declined to comment, saying the matter was sub judice.

The Mail&Guardian reported on Friday that, according to court papers, former Gauteng health MEC Brian Hlongwa had been implicated in corruption dating back to 2006.

It reported that the African National Congress was a beneficiary of his actions and that Hlongwa, who is the ANC's chief whip in Gauteng, allegedly acted as a conduit for bribes.

The National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) had lodged a series of applications in the High Court in Johannesburg asking for orders to freeze the assets of certain companies, and a house.

The NPA reportedly told the court these assets were the proceeds of a crime. In support of the applications, the Hawks and SIU submitted thousands of pages of evidence relating to the alleged corruption.

Among the allegations was that R300 000 was diverted from the Gauteng health department to the ANC's 2009 election campaign in the province. Money was allegedly siphoned off to fund the political ambitions of certain ANC figures. - Sapa
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on July 28, 2014, 08:50:25 am
Quote
State’s wage bill growing ‘too fast’

July 27 2014 at 03:09pm
By LOYISO SIDIMBA

Comment on this story
IOL pic july9 new rand money
Reuters
.
Johannesburg - The head of a constitutional advisory body has warned that the government’s multibillion-rand wage bill is growing too fast compared to the value it is generating.

Financial and Fiscal Commission (FFC) acting chairman and chief executive Bongani Khumalo told The Sunday Independent that the FFC and the Public Service Commission (PSC) were conducting research on the link between productivity in the public sector and the government’s wage bill.

“We’re going to check whether productivity is actually reflective of the wage bill.

“Our (FFC) concern is the size of the wage bill, their (PSC) concern is the efficiency of the public service,” Khumalo said.

Earlier this year, after former finance minister Pravin Gordhan tabled the government’s R1.25 trillion budget, it was reported that public sector workers cost R450 billion of the total amount.

Khumalo said the government was not getting value for the wage bill, which was growing too fast.

The public sector wage bill has consistently constituted the largest component of the government’s expenditure and has the potential to undermine the state’s fulfilment of its service delivery mandate, according to the FFC.

The FFC, the permanent expert commission that advises and recommends to Parliament, provincial legislatures, organised local government and other organs of state on financial and fiscal matters, hopes to include the results of the research in its annual submission to Parliament on the 2016/17 Division of Revenue Bill in May next year.

The FFC and PSC research is one of three massive multimillion-rand salary reviews for public servants and municipal councillors the government is launching through which it hopes to determine whether it is getting value for money for the billions it pays employees.

Khumalo indicated that if the outcomes of the research were to indicate that efficiency levels were low, the government would have answers on why outcomes were so bad – especially in health, education and social development divisions.

“Then we’ll look at how to improve efficiency levels without having to further increase the wage bill,” he said.

Former Chief Justice Sandile Ngcobo heads the Presidential Public Service Remuneration Review Commission, for the establishment of which the Public Service and Administration Department set aside R13.6 million in 2013/14.

The department has set aside another R10m in 2014/15 for the commission, set up by President Jacob Zuma to review public service remuneration policy framework and establish the appropriateness of remuneration and conditions of service of public servants.

The R10m includes R6.3m allocated to compensate commission employees and R3.7m for consultants, travel and subsistence and venues and facilities.

Ngcobo’s commission has until April to conclude its work and four months to submit its final report to Zuma.

The Independent Commission for the Remuneration of Public Office Bearers is also reviewing the salaries of the country’s 10 055 councillors.

Its review will check if there are inconsistencies in the payment of councillors, amend job profiles and identify career paths to help attract and retain them.

The remuneration commission will also check the cost implications of having councillors paid from the national fiscus rather than from municipalities’ budgets.

Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene, his Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs counterpart Pravin Gordhan, the SA Local Government Association and a sample of municipalities identified by the commission will be consulted during the review.

The government is a key employer and, according to the FFC, South Africans are twice as likely to be employed in the public sector compared to 40 years ago.

The FFC has previously blamed the influence of the trade unions, coupled with weak management, on the outcome of wage bargaining agreements.

loyiso.sidimba@inl.co.za
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on July 29, 2014, 08:05:54 am
Quote
Mystery of Cango Caves millions

July 29 2014 at 07:33am
By Warda Meyer

Comment on this story
Copy of ca p2 Cango Caves DONE.JPG.JPG
Ex-QDMS
The Cango Caves in Oudtshoorn. File photo: Andrew Ingram
Cape Town - It is alleged that the embattled Oudtshoorn municipality has moved millions of rand out of the Cango Caves trust accounts and into its own coffers.

Now the Western Cape’s Finance MEC Ivan Meyer, and Local Government MEC Anton Bredell, are probing claims of financial irregularities and mismanagement.

It is claimed the amounts involved start at R16 million.

The Oudtshoorn municipality said it regarded the allegations in a very serious light and would comment comprehensively later.

The extensive formation of caves in the foothills of the Swartberg range is a major tourist attraction and has World Heritage status.

The Oudtshoorn town council remains in political turmoil because of a court order preventing the DA from bringing a motion of no confidence against the ANC, Independent Civic Organisation of SA and National Peoples Party executive, which is currently in charge of the town council.

Bredell told the Cape Argus that over the past year the province had engaged with the municipality on a range of governance issues, including the management of the caves.

In terms of the Cango Caves Ordinance of 1971, the former Administrator of the Cape – to whom Bredell is the successor in law – had certain powers with regard to the caves, although their day-to-day management was the responsibility of the municipality.

Bredell said: “The province has become aware of allegations regarding the misuse of cave funds for municipal purposes.

“Along with my colleague, Dr Ivan Meyer, the necessary provincial structures are now looking into the matter.”

Meyer said on Monday that the provincial government was concerned about the allegations because Oudtshoorn was the heart of the province’s rural economy, and “the Cango Caves is central in the tourism economy of Oudtshoorn and the region”.

Meyer said he would engage with the relevant authorities, including the auditor-general, to ensure that any withdrawals from the Cango Caves Trust Account were legal.

 

A highly placed source, who did not want to be named, claimed more than R16m had been moved from the accounts. “This is not just happening now; this mismanagement has been ongoing for several years,” she said.

The transferred funds should have been used for maintenance and infrastructure development at the caves.

Another informed official said the caves did not get any funding from the municipality or the province, and had been responsible for their own upkeep.

“It needs money to ensure that everything runs smoothly, but if funds are taken from it willy-nilly soon there will be no more caves, just a neglected old landmark,” she said.

Several local residents and businesses confirmed that rumours were rife that the municipality had been milking the caves’ accounts.

AfriForum Oudtshoorn chairman George Kersop said he knew the municipality had not submitted financial statements to the province on the finances of the caves.

“A question one should ask is why provincial government has not stepped in and investigated the financial affairs of the Cango Caves,” he added.

Local resident and DA spokesman Chris McPherson said the real concern was that money that came from the caves was being used for “God knows what” by the municipality.

Municipal staff confidence had reached an all-time low in Oudtshoorn and people were too afraid to speak up.

McPherson said locals were so disillusioned with the state of affairs in their town that nothing could surprise them any more.

warda.meyer@inl.co.za
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on July 29, 2014, 08:11:19 am
Quote
ANC mulls Hlongwa graft claims

July 28 2014 at 07:50pm
By SAPA

Comment on this story
iol news pic Brian Hlongwa
INDEPENDENT NEWSPAPERS
Brian Hlongwa is the ANC chief Whip in the Gauteng Provincial Legislature. Picture:Paballo Thekiso Picture:Paballo Thekiso
Johannesburg - Allegations of corruption involving ANC Gauteng Chief Whip Brian Hlongwa have been referred to the party's integrity committee, the ruling party in the province said on Monday.

“Allegations in the media have been handed over to the integrity committee so that comrade Brian Hlongwa is offered the opportunity to take the organisation into his confidence,” spokesman Nkenke Kekana said.

“To our knowledge he hasn't been charged and we should caution that it should not be a trial by media.”

The Mail&Guardian reported on Friday that according to court papers Hlongwa, the former Gauteng health MEC, had been implicated in corruption dating back to 2006.

It reported that the African National Congress was a beneficiary of his actions and that Hlongwa allegedly acted as a conduit for bribes.

The National Prosecuting Authority had lodged a series of applications in the High Court in Johannesburg asking for orders to freeze the assets of certain companies, and a house.

The NPA reportedly told the court these assets were the proceeds of a crime. In support of the applications, the Hawks and the Special Investigating Unit submitted thousands of pages of evidence relating to the alleged corruption.

Among the allegations was that R300 000 was diverted from the Gauteng health department to the ANC's 2009 election campaign in the province. Money was allegedly siphoned off to fund the political ambitions of certain ANC figures.

Kekana denied that the ANC had received any money from an official in the health department.

“This is not true, we have not received any donation,” he said.

On Friday, the NPA said over R1 billion in contract claims upon the Gauteng health department had been seized. The seizures were related to two tenders awarded by the department in 2007.

The first tender was for the setting up of a project management unit (PMU).

The NPA said the tender was fraudulently rigged in favour of 3P Consulting (Pty) Ltd (3P) and 3P was a party to the rigging. 3P's CEO Richard Payne was a friend of Hlongwa's.

In January 2008, Payne, Hlongwa, plus 3P employees and department officials went on a holiday in Cuba paid for by 3P, the NPA said.

The second tender was for a health information system and electronic health records (HIS-eHR).

It was awarded to Baoki Consortium, who were party to the tender being rigged. During 2007 to 2008, Payne and Pillay paid a R3.3m deposit for a house for Hlongwa at 163 Eccleston Crescent, Bryanston, with the purchase price being R7.2m.

Sapa
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on August 04, 2014, 08:15:59 am
Quote
Public Works official fired for R60m fraud

August 4 2014 at 07:53am
By Baldwin Ndaba

Comment on this story
iol news pic Noloyiso Ntwana
SUPPLIED
Noloyiso Ntwana, former director: prestige unit in the department, was fired for breaching the governments procurement policy and appointing an unregistered quantity surveyor.
Johannesburg - A senior Public Works official has been fired for fraudulently paying contractors more than R60 million to renovate houses for new government ministers in 2009.

Noloyiso Ntwana, former director: prestige unit in the department, was fired for breaching the government’s procurement policy and appointing an unregistered quantity surveyor.

The charges relate to the events after Jacob Zuma became president in May 2009. As a result, houses for the new cabinet were available but needed to be renovated.

Charges against Ntwana come after an intensive investigation by the Special Investigating Unit (SIU) in 2011, which linked her to the fraud. She did not attend the disciplinary hearings.

Ntwana approached the Labour Court to try to stop charges being brought against her but failed.

Phillip Masilo, legal adviser of Public Works Minister Thulas Nxesi, confirmed that SIU evidence was used to prosecute Ntwana.

Masilo said a similar investigation is being conducted in Cape Town into the renovations of 10 ministerial houses which cost the department about R100m. “In Pretoria, the amount was approximately R63m,” Masilo said.

Ntwana faced five misconduct charges.

Mafanywa Mphage Quantity Surveyors and Project Managers were appointed as principal agent, but they were not architects; an architect was supposed to have been appointed.

Ntwana also failed to secure pre-tender estimates to prevent the state from suffering any losses or abuse during the period of renovations.

The charges further stated that Ntwana ensured the payment of professional fees to Mafanywa Mphage, who did not deserve it.

She was also charged with insubordination for allowing payments to corrupt companies, when advised against it. The State led the evidence of three officials and SIU investigator Jande van der Merwe.

Van der Merwe testified that Mafanywa Mphage was not professionally accredited to act as quantity surveyors.

Frans Johannes Potgieter, director: quantity surveying, testified that he became involved in the investigation after the state found a number of defects in the workmanship in the houses.

He said the defects were of such a nature that it “would be obvious to any other professional discipline or another person not necessarily involved in the building industry”.

Potgieter further testified that contractors were paid for just furnishing invoices.

“No architect was appointed for any of the houses in question. There were also arithmetic errors in the bills of quantities by the consultants,” he said.

He also said tender amounts were grossly inflated.

“In some of the houses, the cost was in excess of R5m – enough to build a new house.

“Some of the rates were so inflated that a particular project was definitely not value for money, and the consultant did not even prepare an estimate of any kind,” said Potgieter.

He said contractors were instructed to obtain quotations from suppliers and complete the work and costs paid without any verification.

Detailing how the state was robbed, Potgieter testified that in one case, Bhekanani Building and Construction CC invoiced the department for R149 000, stating it was for “electrical work” at a house in Centurion, without giving the breakdown of work done.

The same company also billed the department R5.4m for the renovations.

It also invoiced for blinds for the same house. Two invoices were submitted – one dated June 8, 2009 and another November 8, 2009 – for the same amount of R167 000.

Another invoice by the same company was for High Glass Air Conditioning, which was installed for R136 344, and an electric fence for R195 400.

Potgieter further testified that Ntwana approved payment of R6.5m to Maite Malatelo Business Enterprise CC for repairs and renovations for a house in Waterkloof, Pretoria, on June 7, 2010.

He further testified that Mafanywa Mphage was paid a consultancy fee of R49 636.71 for work not done on another house in Waterkloof. Potgieter also testified that Mafanywa Mphage motivated for the payment of another house in Waterkloof for more than R5.2m to Lilithalethu 41 CC. He said the amounts spent were not justified on those houses.

The presiding officer, advocate Lesego Montsho, accepted the evidence of the witnesses as it “demonstrates that the department suffered considerable financial loss running into millions of rand by paying for services that were never confirmed to have been rendered or for inflated statements of account”.

Ntwana did not respond to SMSes sent on her two cellphones. Her lawyer, Ndumiso Voyi, also failed to respond to questions e-mailed to him.

Ntwana joins a string of other officials who were fired for defrauding the government.

Masilo said the department was considering criminal and civil claims against Ntwana and various companies that benefited fraudulently in the deals.

He said Nxesi was not going to tolerate any form of corruption and misconduct because corruption robbed the state and taxpayers.

baldwin.ndaba@inl.co.za

The Star
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on August 04, 2014, 04:50:28 pm
Quote
Sita now in real danger of sinking

August 4 2014 at 02:46pm
By Lebogang Seale

Comment on this story
IOL st digi  SITA Nomvalo
Pretoria News
Freeman Nomvalo, chief executive of Sita. Photo: Phill Magakoe
Johannesburg - The multibillion State Information and Technology Agency (Sita) – the backbone of the government’s service delivery through the provision of ICT systems – is in a state of near-paralysis.

The public entity, which boasts an annual budget of R4.5 billion, is struggling to deliver on its mandate to provide the vital IT goods and services to government departments and other public institutions.

Weeks of investigations by The Star have revealed that corruption, maladministration and poor capacity are among the deficiency syndromes hampering Sita.

The entity has also been hamstrung by acute shortage of skills, partly arising from “flight of skill” due to resignations. It has also been bleeding millions of rand in taxpayers’ money because of massive payouts to senior staffers and service providers in golden handshakes.

The litany of malfunctions and malpractices afflicting Sita are laid bare in confidential documents that Independent Newspapers has seen. The documents include Sita’s internal audit reports and independent forensic audit reports and various correspondence.

Sita is struggling to achieve its mandated task to procure information and communications technology goods and services for government departments and other public institutions.

IOL pic july2 computer keyboard generic
.
Supplied
And unless the public entity adopts a decisive turnaround strategy, it faces the grim prospect of collapse.

This is revealed in the entity’s own review report on its performance in the 15 years of its existence.

While the Sita board raves about the “several milestones of delivery” of the requisite services, the report is also damning in its findings about its glaring failures.

“The audit and risk committee noted with concern that only 28 percent of the approved corporate balance scorecard was achieved by the entity, as reported by the Auditor-General,” the report reads, in part.

“The committee sees this non-achievement as a weakness in controlling performance and ensuring accountability and discipline throughout the company.”

The 60-page report, “A reflection of Sita’s 15-year contribution to the nation’s 20 years of democracy”, is signed by chief executor Freeman Nomvalo. It was submitted to former public service and administration minister Lindiwe Sisulu, now human settlements minister.

The report warns of dire consequences if Sita is not transformed.

“Sita sits at the crossroad of meeting the growing demand for services and increasing its value-add to the country, and it needs to re-architect its IT and procurement services and improve its organisational culture,” the report reads.

Last year, the Department of Higher Education and Training blamed Sita for the backlogs in the issuing of certificates to further education and training college students.

Director of examinations in the department Nadine Pote said backlogs were because of the instability of data-sets submitted by the entity, resulting in “high rejection levels by the quality assurance body, Umalusi.

Sita’s review audit report is damning in its findings about “the material breakdown” in the functioning of internal control measures and violations of the Public Finance Management Act, among others.

“Both internal and external audits continue to identify several instances of non-compliance with laws and regulations pertaining to the procurement process, contract management and adherence to internal control,” it reads.

Former auditor-general Terence Nombembe said in his 2012 report that corruption involving Sita amounted to R214 million between 2009 and 2011. It emerged last year that the Special Investigating Unit was investigating as many as 23 cases, mostly related to tender irregularities and conflicts of interest.

In the review report, the committee further “expressed its concern on the number of audit findings identified and reported”.

The negative findings make a mockery of the government’s numerous strategies to improve Sita. In a bid to turn the entity’s fortunes around, the cabinet in 2010 adopted a turnaround strategy and appointed a new board. But that appeared to fizzle when the board was summarily dismissed a year later.

A new board led by Nomvalo and board chairman Jerry Vilakazi was appointed in March this year. Nomvalo is the 17th chief executive in Sita’s 15 years of existence.

The appointment of successive boards appears to have done very little, if anything, to stop the myriad problems bedevelling Sita.

“When the (current) board assumed the reins of Sita in March 2013, it was against the backdrop of a looming storm. The organisation had been in the throes of a turnaround since 2010 and most of the strategic imperatives emanating from the turnaround were yet unrealised,” the report says.

Crucially, Sita’s report indicates that the entity had dismally failed to achieve most of its own targets. This includes sound financial management, improving its own corporate strategy, training companies and SMMEs, and reducing the number of customer complaints. Sita had also failed dismally to improve its supply chain management strategy.

Such is the severity of the problems that some departments - including Correctional Services and Water Affairs - became embroiled in disputes with Sita for bypassing the entity and procuring goods and services using their own internal procurement processes.

In the report, the board recommends a range of interventions.

“Fixing the procurement process” so as “to procure goods and services at a lower cost and improving bid specification quality” is listed as the cornerstone of its turnaround strategy. An initiative called Siyashesha was also introduced as an “immediate intervention to close glaring gaps linked to customer complaints”.

The Department of Public Service and Administration appears to acknowledge the crisis.

“We also note that President Jacob Zuma signed a proclamation for a formal investigation into Sita,” said departmental spokesman Brent Simons.

Sita has since been transferred to the new Ministry of Telecommunications and Postal Services.

Accounting and auditing findings as of March 31 this year:

* Investigations into allegations of financial misconduct against officials were, in some instances, not instituted within 30 days of discovery, as required by the National Treasury.

* Financial statements submitted for auditing were not prepared in accordance with the prescribed financial reporting framework, as required by the Public Finance Management Act and the Companies Act.

* Sita accumulated surpluses without the Treasury’s approval, in contravention of the Public Finance Management Act.

* Sita did not timeously establish a social and ethics committee, as required by the Companies Act.

* Investigations into allegations of financial misconduct against officials were, in some instances, not instituted within 30 days of discovery, as required by the Treasury’s regulations.

* The committee had expressed its concern at the number of audit findings that had been identified and had requested that the follow-up process on the resolution of these findings be accelerated and, where necessary, escalated.

Sita’s response

Freeman Nomvalo, chief executive of Sita, says the entity is on course to fix its problems.

“These are all indicators that this has been an organisation that has been broken down, but it is on the mend. I am saying it has not been fixed, but it is on the mend,” Nomvalo said in an interview with The Star.

He attributed the problems afflicting Sita to lack of stability at the organisation’s top management level.

“The issue with Sita is you do have an inherent problem that arises out of lack of continuity. You need consistency at the top. My sense is that the bigger problem is the lack of stability at the leadership level.”

The Star
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: cocky on August 04, 2014, 04:55:23 pm
Johannesburg - The multibillion State Information and Technology Agency (Sita) – the backbone of the government’s service delivery through the provision of ICT systems – is in a state of near-paralysis.

The public entity, which boasts an annual budget of R4.5 billion, is struggling to deliver on its mandate to provide the vital IT goods and services to government departments and other public institutions.

Weeks of investigations by The Star have revealed that corruption, maladministration and poor capacity are among the deficiency syndromes hampering Sita.

The entity has also been hamstrung by acute shortage of skills, partly arising from “flight of skill” due to resignations. It has also been bleeding millions of rand in taxpayers’ money because of massive payouts to senior staffers and service providers in golden handshakes.

The litany of malfunctions and malpractices afflicting Sita are laid bare in confidential documents that Independent Newspapers has seen. The documents include Sita’s internal audit reports and independent forensic audit reports and various correspondence.

Sita is struggling to achieve its mandated task to procure information and communications technology goods and services for government departments and other public institutions.

IOL pic july2 computer keyboard generic
.
Supplied
And unless the public entity adopts a decisive turnaround strategy, it faces the grim prospect of collapse.

This is revealed in the entity’s own review report on its performance in the 15 years of its existence.

While the Sita board raves about the “several milestones of delivery” of the requisite services, the report is also damning in its findings about its glaring failures.

“The audit and risk committee noted with concern that only 28 percent of the approved corporate balance scorecard was achieved by the entity, as reported by the Auditor-General,” the report reads, in part.

“The committee sees this non-achievement as a weakness in controlling performance and ensuring accountability and discipline throughout the company.”

The 60-page report, “A reflection of Sita’s 15-year contribution to the nation’s 20 years of democracy”, is signed by chief executor Freeman Nomvalo. It was submitted to former public service and administration minister Lindiwe Sisulu, now human settlements minister.

The report warns of dire consequences if Sita is not transformed.

“Sita sits at the crossroad of meeting the growing demand for services and increasing its value-add to the country, and it needs to re-architect its IT and procurement services and improve its organisational culture,” the report reads.

Last year, the Department of Higher Education and Training blamed Sita for the backlogs in the issuing of certificates to further education and training college students.

Director of examinations in the department Nadine Pote said backlogs were because of the instability of data-sets submitted by the entity, resulting in “high rejection levels by the quality assurance body, Umalusi.

Sita’s review audit report is damning in its findings about “the material breakdown” in the functioning of internal control measures and violations of the Public Finance Management Act, among others.

“Both internal and external audits continue to identify several instances of non-compliance with laws and regulations pertaining to the procurement process, contract management and adherence to internal control,” it reads.

Former auditor-general Terence Nombembe said in his 2012 report that corruption involving Sita amounted to R214 million between 2009 and 2011. It emerged last year that the Special Investigating Unit was investigating as many as 23 cases, mostly related to tender irregularities and conflicts of interest.

In the review report, the committee further “expressed its concern on the number of audit findings identified and reported”.

The negative findings make a mockery of the government’s numerous strategies to improve Sita. In a bid to turn the entity’s fortunes around, the cabinet in 2010 adopted a turnaround strategy and appointed a new board. But that appeared to fizzle when the board was summarily dismissed a year later.

A new board led by Nomvalo and board chairman Jerry Vilakazi was appointed in March this year. Nomvalo is the 17th chief executive in Sita’s 15 years of existence.

The appointment of successive boards appears to have done very little, if anything, to stop the myriad problems bedevelling Sita.

“When the (current) board assumed the reins of Sita in March 2013, it was against the backdrop of a looming storm. The organisation had been in the throes of a turnaround since 2010 and most of the strategic imperatives emanating from the turnaround were yet unrealised,” the report says.

Crucially, Sita’s report indicates that the entity had dismally failed to achieve most of its own targets. This includes sound financial management, improving its own corporate strategy, training companies and SMMEs, and reducing the number of customer complaints. Sita had also failed dismally to improve its supply chain management strategy.

Such is the severity of the problems that some departments - including Correctional Services and Water Affairs - became embroiled in disputes with Sita for bypassing the entity and procuring goods and services using their own internal procurement processes.

In the report, the board recommends a range of interventions.

“Fixing the procurement process” so as “to procure goods and services at a lower cost and improving bid specification quality” is listed as the cornerstone of its turnaround strategy. An initiative called Siyashesha was also introduced as an “immediate intervention to close glaring gaps linked to customer complaints”.

The Department of Public Service and Administration appears to acknowledge the crisis.

“We also note that President Jacob Zuma signed a proclamation for a formal investigation into Sita,” said departmental spokesman Brent Simons.

Sita has since been transferred to the new Ministry of Telecommunications and Postal Services.

Accounting and auditing findings as of March 31 this year:

* Investigations into allegations of financial misconduct against officials were, in some instances, not instituted within 30 days of discovery, as required by the National Treasury.

* Financial statements submitted for auditing were not prepared in accordance with the prescribed financial reporting framework, as required by the Public Finance Management Act and the Companies Act.

* Sita accumulated surpluses without the Treasury’s approval, in contravention of the Public Finance Management Act.

* Sita did not timeously establish a social and ethics committee, as required by the Companies Act.

* Investigations into allegations of financial misconduct against officials were, in some instances, not instituted within 30 days of discovery, as required by the Treasury’s regulations.

* The committee had expressed its concern at the number of audit findings that had been identified and had requested that the follow-up process on the resolution of these findings be accelerated and, where necessary, escalated.

Sita’s response

Freeman Nomvalo, chief executive of Sita, says the entity is on course to fix its problems.

“These are all indicators that this has been an organisation that has been broken down, but it is on the mend. I am saying it has not been fixed, but it is on the mend,” Nomvalo said in an interview with The Star.

He attributed the problems afflicting Sita to lack of stability at the organisation’s top management level.

“The issue with Sita is you do have an inherent problem that arises out of lack of continuity. You need consistency at the top. My sense is that the bigger problem is the lack of stability at the leadership level.”
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on August 05, 2014, 04:44:16 pm
Quote
Big salaries drain public funds

August 5 2014 at 04:29pm
By LEE RONDGANGER

Comment on this story
IOL pic july9 new rand money
Reuters
.
Durban - The managers of five KwaZulu-Natal municipalities that have been placed under administration for poor performance continue to draw their R900 000-a-year salaries - much to the chagrin of the DA, who called it a “flagrant abuse of public funds”.

However, the Department of Co-operative Governance, in a written provincial parliamentary reply to the DA’s George Mari, said there was nothing untoward with municipal managers collecting their salaries as they continued to “exercise functions and powers assigned to them”.

According to the department, five municipalities, Indaka, Mtubatuba, Abaqulusi, Umvoti and Imbabazane, have been placed under administration and are being run by department-appointed administrators who each a earn monthly salary package of R135 188.

All five administration contracts are due to expire at the end of September. Some have been running the failed municipalities since 2012.

The department said that since the administrators took over the municipalities, performances had improved substantially.

But the DA said the fact that the municipal managers who were now having their work done for them by the administrators and continued to earn “hugely inflated salaries” were a concern.

“We expect the MEC to review the employment contracts of these municipal managers. It is unacceptable that they should continue to earn fat cat salaries when they have allowed their municipalities to become dysfunctional to the point where they have to be run by the province,” Mari said.

“While the DA notes some of the improvements made within these entities, there can be no place for managers who are not fit for purpose and lack the skills to do the job - too much depends on it and it is ultimately the communities that suffer most.”

Binding

The department said, however, that the municipal managers were employed as accounting officers and had binding contracts with their employers.

“Administrators have specific terms of references based only on the powers assumed by the executive council, and cannot discharge other functions of accounting officers. Administrators drive implementation of recovery plans while accounting officers discharge functions of accounting officers subject to ratification of administrators,” MEC for Co-operative Governance Nomusa Dube-Ncube said.

The revelations come just days after the auditor-general’s report found that only seven - Uthungulu, Msinga, Ntambanana, Okhahlamba, Ubuhlebezwe, uMhlathuze and uMzimkhulu - of KZN’s 61 municipalities received a clean audit.

Four municipal entities, Durban Marine Theme Park, Safe City Pietermaritzburg, uThungulu House Development Trust, and uThungulu Financing Partnership, were also given clean audits, with Auditor-General Kimi Makwetu noting an overall improvement in the KZN municipal audit outcomes.

Makwetu said the improvement in the audit outcomes was due to a commitment displayed by both political and administrative leadership, together with oversight role-players, to monitor progress on action plans to address audit findings.

The auditor-general had also found that overall, irregular expenditure at the province’s municipalities and municipal entities had increased by 14 percent.

This represented an increase from R1.56 million irregular expenditure in 2011/12 to that totalling R1.78m in the year under review (2012/13).

Nomusa Dube-Ncube last week said that along with the seven clean audits, many other municipalities had seen a reduction in audit queries.

Daily News
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: Dorsland on August 05, 2014, 05:05:25 pm
Gee who would've thought that this would happen in the wonderful rainbow nation.  Wonder if those fools who gave Zumaclown a standing ovation the the US are also on his payroll?  Maybe they are just also stupid
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: Dux on August 05, 2014, 08:36:40 pm
.
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: punisher on August 06, 2014, 08:50:56 am
Viva locusts VIVA
Title: Re: Government wasting tax payers money
Post by: alanB on January 28, 2015, 01:34:22 pm
Quote
‘R700bn lost to corruption in 20 years’

January 28 2015 at 11:02am
 Comment on this story
IOL handshake men sxc
sxc.hu
File photo
Johannesburg - South Africa has lost R700 billion to corruption over the last 20 years, the Institute of Internal Auditors said on Wednesday.

“The cost of corruption in the last 20 years... we have lost R700bn,” CEO Claudelle von Eck said at the launch of the Anti-Intimidation and Ethical Practices Forum in Johannesburg.

Von Eck, who is the forum's chairwoman, said people who tried to report corruption were often muzzled.

“Members are being intimidated when they try and raise the issue of corruption in an organisation.”

Von Eck said the forum aimed to educate its members about corruption, advise them how to reveal corruption, and what to do when whistle-blowers were intimidated.

It was intended to be a professional collective voice which would make pronouncements about the state of governance in the country.

“We cannot be silent. As professionals we should be able to say this is what the state is, this is what we need to do to rectify things.”

The forum consists of an executive committee, agencies who can take action, interested organisations, and an evaluation panel.

“As professionals we have a responsibility, an understanding that our responsibility does not begin and end just at our desk and just at our jobs. We've got to carry South Africa,” she said.

Sapa