UNANSWERED QUESTIONS ON ROADS: THE HERALD

I AM responding to the letter, “CDC contract from Bhisho improves delivery” (July 2).

As the DA spokesman for roads and public works, I received numerous complaints about poor service delivery in respect of the Eastern Cape Department of Roads and Public Works three-year roads contractor development programme (RCDP) with the Coega Development Corporation (CDC). I have investigated most of these complaints but to get absolute clear facts about this matter I also sent questions to the political head of roads and public works, MEC Thandiswa Marawu.

These questions, marked question 109 for 2012 in the Eastern Cape legislature, brought the following facts to light and were also confirmed in writing by the MEC. They also confirmed my worst fears and that is that:

The total amount transferred to the CDC for the 2011/2012 financial year was R488 502 245.27. From that amount R91 881 940 was used for emerging consultants, R21 631 841.15 was used for managing consultants, R18 341 454.45 was used to manage contractors, and R78 015 918.05 was never used and rolled over to the next financial year.

From this it is clear that close to 40% of taxpayers’ money transferred to the CDC was spent on non-service delivery outcomes.

Non-service delivery outcomes were never part of the RCDP agreement.

After my concern about this situation was raised in a letter to The Herald on May 31 (“Contract means less money for roads”), CDC chief executive Pepi Silinga requested a meeting with me in Port Elizabeth.

A good discussion followed in which Silinga informed me that the written response to my parliamentary questions by the MEC was not accurate.

I subsequently wrote a letter to the MEC about these allegations, and asked for an urgent meeting with her, her staff, the portfolio committee for roads and public works and representatives of the CDC.

I received acknowledgement of receipt of my letter, but I am still awaiting the meeting where my intention is to find out why the MEC chose to mislead me, members of the house and indeed the citizens of this provinces about public expenditure.

Pine Pienaar, MPL

DA spokesman on roads