Siyanda Ndlovu
Digital Journalist
2 minute read
31 May 2021
1:05 pm

Lesufi: Act against me if my name comes up in R431m Covid cleaning probe

Siyanda Ndlovu

Gauteng education MEC promises to act without fear or favour regardless of who gets implicated in Covid decontamination probe.

Gauteng education MEC Panyaza Lesufi. Picture: Neil McCartney

Gauteng education MEC Panyaza Lesufi has laid down a challenge that there should be action against him should his name come up in the corruption probe of the Special Investigating Unit (SIU) in the multimillion-rand school decontamination tender probe.

Lesufi was speaking at Cornwall Hill College on Monday morning.

The topic came up while he was addressing parents and pupils who were holding a peaceful protest outside the school calling for an end to racism.

Fourteen bank accounts of service providers have been frozen after they were linked to a tender worth R431 million to decontaminate schools during the early days of the Covid-19 lockdown. The splurge was criticised for being largely pointless since the schools had been empty for weeks and were unlikely to have any SARS Cov-2 virus anyway.

“I will act immediately, I will act without fear or favour on whoever is implicated. Even if the report mentions me, someone must act against me,” said Lesufi.

He promised to act against all those implicated in the report once it is finalised.

The Democratic Alliance last week called for more heads to roll at the department following the announcement by the SIU that it had been granted a preservation order of more than R40 million to freeze the bank accounts of 14 companies.

ALSO READ: DA calls for heads to roll in school decontamination scandal

The party called on Lesufi to suspend Gauteng department of education head of department Edward Mosuwe, CFO Johan van Coller and supply chain management chief director Samora Mhlophe.

It said that the three top officials of the department failed in their responsibilities to ensure contracts were above board and that policies of supply chain management, procurement processes and financial management were adhered to.

The SIU report found that 173 service providers appointed to decontaminate Gauteng schools were not accredited and were not on the Central Supplier Database.