PPE tenders: NW municipalities, FS Treasury under fire

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The JB Marks Local Municipality and the Ratlou Local Municipality in the North West are amongst those that have come under fire following the release of an investigative report into Covid-19 PPE tenders by the Special Investigating Unit (SIU).

OFM News reports that the two municipalities are said to be amongst state institutions that have engaged in fraud, corruption and financial misconduct. Briefing the media on the allegations of corruption over the procurement of PPEs by organs of state, the SIU Head, Andy Mothibi, confirmed an administrator and a middle manager at these municipalities are under investigation for fraud relating to irregular tender processes.

Mothibi said investigations have revealed that there was cover coating by suppliers and officials, that suppliers used front companies to obtain multiple contracts.

“In other instances, we also found out that there were misrepresentations from suppliers by not disclosing their close friendships with officials who were involved in awarding PPE contracts”.

He further confirmed some government officials in the Free State, Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal, Limpopo, Mpumalanga and the Western Cape are also embroiled in PPE tender fraud and corruption cases and that investigations in these provinces are also underway.

Mothibi highlighted that several investigations involving officials from the Free State Treasury are underway, and have so far made a referral to the National Prosecuting Authority over one Senior Manager within the Provincial Treasury.

He said a total of 12 fraud and corruption allegations relating to the PPE are under investigation in the North West, 11 in the Free State and one in the Northern Cape.

OFM News/KATLEHO MORAPELA