South Africa

Joburg mayor calls on city manager to act swifty against those implicated in PPE fraud

Johannesburg – Procedures were not adhered to in awarding tenders for personal protective equipment (PPE) by the City of Joburg and “swift action is to be taken against those involved”.

This week, mayor Geoff Makhubo submitted an initial report to the monthly council meeting which confirms discrepancies in the awarding of these contracts from March 15 to 31.

At the same meeting, Makhubo welcomed back ANC councillor Loyiso Masuku, member of the mayoral committee (MMC) for group corporate and shared services, who was on suspension following the tender scandal.

Makhubo said he accepted her return after she was cleared by the ANC internally.

The Gauteng ANC had initially asked Makhubo to place her on extended leave in July while it internally investigated claims linking the MMC, her husband, former health MEC Dr Bandile Masuku, and presidential spokesperson Khusela Diko to corruption claims in the awarding of PPE tenders.

Speaking on the alleged fraud, the mayor called for swift action by the city manager against those implicated in wrongdoing “in line with our commitment to a responsive, transparent and corruption-free government; we have directed the city manager to act swiftly and decisively against those found in the wrong in line with the recommendations of the report and council”.

The report had noted budget management and procurement processes were not carried out in accordance with relevant circulars and laws applicable to supply chain and procurement.

However, he highlighted that R240 million spent on Covid-19- related procurements and not R600m as was claimed by the opposition parties and reported by media.

The meeting resolved that in the next council sitting, the city manager, as an accounting officer, should provide the second phase of the report which will give more details on all Covid-19 procurement conducted by the city.

“The people of Joburg demand accountability from all of us. Consequence management on this matter should be implemented urgently.

“We are pleased that council perused and deliberated extensively on the report, and as a united front also made recommendations to the report,” said Makhubo.

The Star

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