Premier slated over tardy graft investigations: Daily Dispatch

THE Office of the Premier (OTP) came under harsh criticism for only investigating 85 of 400 cases of fraud and corruption in the provincial government reported to it.

The revelation was made by DA OTP spokesman Edmund van Vuuren on Tuesday during debates on the annual reports of provincial departments.

Van Vuuren said the pace at which the premier’s office was addressing the backlog of cases was slow and not acceptable as it had a “direct impact on service delivery”.

“If the Office of the Premier is serious about fighting crime and corruption then it must accelerate its efforts in addressing these backlogs,” he said, adding that the premier must draft a detailed plan to address the backlog.

In July this year, the Daily Dispatch reported that the OTP planned to investigate allegations of fraud and corruption involving the provincial government’s tender process.

However, by the time of writing yesterday OTP spokesman Mxolisi Spondo had not been able to confirm whether the investigations had been conducted.

Questions to the OTP communications team were also not answered at the time of writing yesterday.

The Dispatch understands that communications manager Mandisa Titi and other relevant managers are out of the province at present.

The Economic Freedom Fighters legislature leader Themba Wele criticised the manner in which the cases were handled.

“We are in a huge problem of corruption in the province and the delay in these investigations is not helping at all.

“Some of the cases are supposed to have been finished already but certain individuals are being protected,” Wele said, adding that the Nelson Mandela funeral scandal that rocked the OTP and the Buffalo City Metro is one of the investigations that the provincial government is supposed to have finished. — siphem@dispatch.co.za

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