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By Citizen Reporter


EFF files complaint with Mkhwebane over R1.2bn in corruption that hasn’t happened yet – report

A security tender that hasn't been advertised yet will be irregular, the party alleges.

The EFF has filed a complaint with the Public Protector over alleged corruption that has not yet taken place, Sunday World reports.

According to the publication, the EFF sent a letter to Advocate Busisiwe Mkhwebane saying a R1.2 billion security tender involving the department of justice and correctional services will be rigged.

However, the tender is yet to be advertised and the spokesperson of the department, Steve Mahlangu, told the publication that the budget for the tender is not known yet and that the business case and specifications are still being composed.

In the letter from Gardee to Mkhwebane, it is alleged that officials from the department told the EFF that the tender would be awarded to a certain contractor through corrupt means and that black-owned companies would be overlooked in its awarding.

Mahlangu told the publication that the bid process in the department is regulated and that it does not allow for a tender to be awarded to one specific company over another.

Gardee alleged in the letter to Mkhwebane that some officials in the department had in the past manipulated tenders for their own benefit.

Gardee alleged that one official had taken bribes from a service provider and these bribes had been paid to a bank account in Botswana belonging to the official’s relative and that the money would then be transferred to the official’s account in South Africa.

The Pretoria based home of this official was allegedly renovated by the service provider who also purchased household items for the official, Gardee claims in the letter.

READ MORE: EFF reports Gordhan to Mkhwebane for ‘lying’ to parliament

The EFF secretary general confirmed to the publication that the party had written to Mkhwebane, however, it was still waiting for an acknowledgement of receipt from her office.

The spokesperson of the public protector, Oupa Segalwe, confirmed that the letter had been received and that the complaint was registered to determine its merits.

Gardee was part of the ANC in Botswana when he was exiled to South Africa, after his involvement in student uprisings. He worked for the ANC before joining the EFF, and is now the commissar responsible for the EFF’s mobilisations, campaigns and special projects. Gardee holds a Higher National Diploma in Accounting and Auditing, and is currently studying law through UNISA.

He made news in 2017 after he was accused of punching and slapping a young EFF member multiple times.

The EFF has complained to the Public Protector several times before, writing an official complaint in November 2018 calling on her to investigate Minister of Public Enterprises Pravin Gordhan for allegedly lying in a 2016 parliamentary response.

They have not always been fans of Mkhwebane in the past, however, calling on her to step down from the office of the Public Protector following the scathing judgment against her handed down by a full bench of the High Court in Pretoria in February 2018.

They also said they “regretted” initially endorsing her, but then supported her against an attempt by DA earlier this year to remove her.

The judges set aside the public protector’s Bankorp CIEX report which found that R1.125 billion must be recovered from Absa Bank – Bankorp was the predecessor of Absa – for a bailout paid to Bankorp by the Reserve Bank during the apartheid era.

The court ordered Mkhwebane to pay 85% of the costs of Absa and the South African Reserve Bank (Sarb) in her official capacity, but to personally pay 15% of the costs.

(Compiled by Makhosandile Zulu and Daniel Friedman)

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