SIU to probe troubled Central Joburg TVET College
By Loyiso Sidimba 32m ago
Share this article:
Johannesburg – President Cyril Ramaphosa has ordered the Special Investigating Unit (SIU) to probe widespread corruption and serious maladministration at the troubled Central Johannesburg Technical and Vocational Education and Training College (CJC).
The college, which was placed under administration in May 2019 after a forensic investigation uncovered irregularities, will be investigated for acts of serious maladministration, improper or unlawful conduct by officials or employees and unlawful appropriation or expenditure of public money or property.
According to Ramaphosa’s proclamation, the SIU will also probe any unlawful, irregular or unapproved acquisitive act, transaction, measure or practice having a bearing upon state property and the intentional or negligent loss of public money or damage to public property.
Offences under the SIU’s radar include those committed in terms of the Prevention and Combating of Corrupt Activities Act of 2004 in connection with the affairs of the CJC, or unlawful or improper conduct by any person which has caused, or may cause, serious harm to the interests of the public or any category.
Another investigation commissioned by CJC administrator Phumzile Kedama found poor governance at the institution, lack of internal controls, poor audit outcomes, disruption of teaching and learning by students, and community protests.
The probe established that some of the disruptions were caused by staff members.
Over a dozen staff members were suspended at the CJC, which has eight campuses across Johannesburg, for offences ranging from neglect of duties to abuse of property and bringing the institution into disrepute.
CJC students have complained about its irrelevant curriculum, which disqualifies them employment opportunities, outdated textbooks and lecturers who are under-skilled.
They have also been unhappy with accommodation, especially the exorbitant fees charged by private residences, which can only be afforded by university students, those paying in cash and others funded through bursaries.
Another contentious issue is the state of some of these accommodation facilities, which students feel should not be used.