SIU urged to probe more recent issues in Saldanha Bay
By Mwangi Githahu 33m ago
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Cape Town – As the Special Investigating Unit (SIU) probes allegations of corruption and mismanagement in the procurement of security services at the Saldanha Bay municipality going back as far as 2017, there have been calls for them to probe more recent transgressions.
The investigation was authorised on Christmas Eve by President Cyril Ramaphosa and the terms of reference include serious maladministration in connection with the affairs of the municipality as well as improper unlawful conduct by the officials or employees of the municipality.
Good Party MPL Brett Herron, who in November alerted the SIU to claims by whistleblowers about the alleged hijacking of Covid-19 food relief supplies by Saldanha Bay Municipality bosses for party political purposes, said yesterday: “I’m pleased to see that the president has extended the SIU mandate to include procurement irregularities since these were part of my complaint to Local Government MEC Anton Bredell.”
Herron said: “But I have little confidence that the provincial government will conduct an impartial investigation of a DA local government (branch). With this proclamation the investigation is out of the hands of the provincial government and there should be no cover-up of any wrongdoing if it is found.”
On the issue of his previous complaints about Saldanha Bay municipality to the SIU, Herron said: “I received a request from the SIU for the contact details of the witnesses which I provided. I expect that the SIU is now busy gathering the evidence.”
DA Saldanha Bay constituency head Erik Marais said: “The Democratic Alliance in Saldanha Bay welcomes any investigation of unlawful practices and will therefore fully co-operate with the SIU investigation.”
“Those who are in contravention of the law must be brought to book,” Marais said.
ANC provincial spokesperson on Local Government Danville Smith said: “The people of Saldanha deserve the truth. As the ANC we remain steadfast behind the president’s call for irregularities to be uncovered and those implicated must be exposed and held liable.”