Today is the deadline for the Minister of Public Works and Infrastructure, Patricia De Lille to honour the request by Parliament’s Standing Committee on Public Accounts (SCOPA) for her to hand over the investigation report by the Special Investigations Unit (SIU) into the Beitbridge Border Fence saga.
We hope that Minister De Lille will honour this SCOPA deadline. Besides, if the investigations clear her of wrongdoing as she has continuously claimed then she will have no problem handing the report over to Parliament for scrutiny.
The Democratic Alliance (DA) will not take Minister De Lille’s word for it, because we believe that she knows more about the Beitbridge ‘washing line’ than she is letting on.
The fact that her advisors, Mcendisi Mtshali and Melissa Whitehead, were part of a meeting with various role players to discuss the procurement process, and National Treasury’s damning findings against her indicating that “it would seem the Minister had a contract, supplier or contractor in mind“, lends more credence to the allegations levelled against her.
Frankly, the Minister’s handling of this matter smacks of dishonesty. Why has she been so reluctant to hand over the SIU report? Is it because she afraid that the information contained therein will reveal the true extent of her involvement and that it will not absolve her as she claimed?
Without the SIU report, the only inference that can be drawn is that Minister De Lille has something to hide. In the interest of transparency and accountability De Lille must release the report.
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