Please find attached soundbite by Siviwe Gwarube MP.
The DA welcomes the release of the Special Investigating Unit (SIU) report into government’s spending of Covid-19 funds. We have long called for this report to be made public and will be analysing it with a fine-tooth comb.
The SIU found that assets and money to the tune of R551.5 million need to be recovered, and they have yet to complete the investigation. The final amount of money pilfered is likely more than this.
This was money earmarked to procure procurement of personal protective equipment (PPE) and other lifesaving resources during the height of the Covid-19 pandemic. Sadly true to form cadres and tenderpreneurs took advantage while vulnerable and ill people were struggling to survive the devastation of the pandemic.
The SIU investigated 5 468 contracts for the procurement of PPE of which 476 cases still need to be finalised. 2 803 contracts were identified as irregular, which implicates 1 217 service providers who inappropriately and illegally gained millions from this crisis. To date, R34 million has been recovered.
We welcome the fact that referrals have been made to the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) and we call on them to swiftly prosecute those who are guilty without fear or favour.
A strong message needs to be sent to those who seek to profit off and loot the State. The only way to secure South Africa’s future is to ensure that the wheels of justice continue turning.
The corrupt and greedy have tried to make the country a lawless wasteland where the rule of law and vulnerable people can be trampled. This must not be allowed to continue.
Criminals should know that the free-fall is over.