The blatant, fraudulent “mistakes” of the Eastern Cape Liquor Board has again been exposed, this time after it emerged that the Board’s Annual Performance Plan and Budget presentation for 2010/11 is a cut and paste copy of the 2009/10 version. Sobriety is seriously lacking here in getting the basics right.

Although the Board will give a multitude of excuses, the fact remains that key people employed at the Liquor Board are not fit for purpose; they do not have any intention to improve the functionality of this parastatal.

This shocking revelation was made at a meeting of the Portfolio Committee for Economic Development, Environment and Tourism on Friday. (subs: 7 May).

The Department of Economic Development, Environment and Tourism (Dedea) told the committee that the Liquor Board has been consistently non-compliant and blatantly disregards treasury regulation guidelines.

The ANC’s mentality of not taking action — other than redeployment — against officials that make consistent, blatant and fraudulent ”mistakes” without being held accountable, happens across the board, in all departments and must stop now.

Dedea will now be assisting the officials of the Liquor Board in doing their work by helping them prepare a proper and complaint document, to be tabled within the next two weeks. What this means is that incompetent, lazy officials who earn outrageous salaries, are getting off the hook and are given a second chance. It also means that the tax payer is now paying double for work than should have been done properly the first time by competent senior officials.

How can we trust senior officials that blatantly show disregard for the jobs they were hired to do? We caught them this time. The real question is how many times have they pulled the wool over our eyes? And does the ANC really care? Only actions will tell.

I will be asking a parliamentary question to the MEC, Mcebisi Jonas, to enquire as to how he will intervene and make sure that the guilty parties are held accountable.

Until people are held accountable for their actions and politicians for their decisions, we can expect more of the same.

For further information, please contact John Cupido, MPL on 083 336 6987