EFF’s Collen Sedibe unveils plans to nail Mabuza’s cabinet

OUT FOR THE KILL: EFF chairman Collen Sedibe says he will nail those behind fraud and corruption in the province

The leader of the Economic Freedom Fighters in Mpumalanga was addressing media at the province’s legislature building.

As part of this plan, Mabuza will also be nailed for fraud and corruption.

Sedibe was addressing journalists at the Mpumalanga legislature in Mbombela’s Riverside and revealed plans to lay charges of fraud and corruption against the political heads of the Mpumalanga government departments. This comes after an Auditor-General’s report a week ago that found the provincial government and state-owned entities were engaged in fruitless and wasteful expenditure amounting to R8 billion.

He said they will open up fraud and corruption cases against all the MECs and accouting officers in Mabuza’s government and take the matter to the Public Protector as well as the Special Crime Investigation Unit.

“As the EFF, the opposition in the legislature, we are very much worried that the provincial administration is forever regressing after the audit-report for the financial year 2015/16,” he said.

“The auditor general also found that the commitment by the executive and the legislature in ensuring good and clean governance is not honoured. They are wrapped up in one blanket, including us as opposition parties.

“But that is because every time we are in the committees and trying to hold the executive accountable, the ruling party uses its majoritarian rule to cover up for the departments and we are worried that the departments and stated-owned entities are forever deteriorating,” Sedibe told journalists.

A proposal by the EFF was made to the legislature to push the provincial government to implement the skill audit for all senior managers “because all this is as a result of the cadre deployment policy of the ANC,” he said.

“The second issue is the management of procurement and contracts which has also regressed by 60% and affected all 11 departments,” he said.

He said most of the “rot is caused by deviation without justification” and that auditor general’s finding that tender rules were not followed by the departments in its awarding of contracts to service providers.

“Every time the departments are appointing service providers they are not following  the supply chain management processes, in terms of the appointment of contractors and are doing what is called ‘unjustified deviation’.

That means there’s no need to do those deviations but here in Mpumalanga it’s happening,” said Sedibe.

The EFF now is planning to write “in due course” to the national treasurer and request him to place the entire province under administration.

SEE ALSO: Gordhan and Mabuza media conference accepts only two questions from journalists, rejects one of them

Sedibe said if the national government was able to place the Limpopo government under administration in 2011 they should do so now because the Mpumalanga government is worse than that.

Sedibe blasted the Rapid Implementation Unit (RIU) in the Office of the Premier saying it is used to loot funds from the departments.

“Big infrastructure projects are taken away from Departments like health and public works and put under the Rapid Implementation Unit (RIU) so that they can be under the direct control of the premier”

He said the appointment of an inexperienced Sasekani Manzini to the helm of the department of public works, roads and transport was a clear example of such.

“She doesn’t know anything, I wonder what does she contribute at management meetings because she has to deal with engineers and all sorts of highly skilled professionals, but she has been put there so that Mabuza has direct control over the department,” he said

Sedibe said the Premier’s office and the provincial treasurer were actually the ones that ought to be at the centre of ensuring that all departments receive clean audits by providing monitoring and support to the departments, however this was not the case.

“But our most worrying factor is that the irregular and fruitless expenditure and unauthorised expenditure is increasing year in and year out and this affects our people because this money is meant for service delivery projects.

“The other issue is the issue of the report presented by the Hawks in the national assembly that Mpumalanga province is at 80% in terms of fraud and corruption cases and was presented by the Hawks boss. I do have it in my e-mail, in case anyone wants it,” said the EFF chairman, who is also the member of the legislature in the province.

He said as the EFF they  believed the Public Service Commission report presented a week ago was also a problem “because members of the commission were not speaking to ordinary people”.

“We raised that issue because we are suspicious that they are not competent as well and may be putting other issues under the carpet and the Integrity Management Unit in the Premier’s office has someone who doesn’t possess a matric and the requirement of such an office is for such a person to have a forensic background and knowledge.

“That’s why even the cases which are reported are being useless because they’ve weakened that office deliberately,” he said.

He added that during the presentation of the AG’s damning report to the Standing Committee on Public Accounts (Scopa) they actually asked the auditor general whether they could use the report to nail Mabuza’s government heads and the auditor answered, “he said ‘yes, it’s up to us”.

“And then we asked them whether they are prepared to come as witnesses as the authors of this document and they said ‘yes’, if they receive subpoenas they will come as witnesses.”

(edited by MLM)

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