Gauteng Sports MEC Prioritises Events over Development

Gauteng Sports MEC Molebatsi Bopape today showed her disdain for sports development in the province through her misguided belief that hosting events hold more importance than purchasing sports equipment.

Oral Questions in the Gauteng Legislature

Solly Msimanga DA Gauteng Spokesperson on Sports

During her response to oral questions on funding for the Gauteng Sports Awards, the DA asked the MEC why more than R25 million was spent on events in the first three quarters of the 2014/15 financial year, but only R591 000 on sports equipment.

In an amusing attempt to wriggle out of what is clearly an embarrassing situation, it became quite clear the MEC had no idea of the affairs of her department, when she said that “The Department of Sports is a department of events”.

Repositioning Gauteng Sports Department Expenditure

The DA has for years been calling for the re-prioritisation of the department’s expenditure from hosting lavish events and overseas trips for MECs, to improving sports infrastructure in our communities and to provide equipment to the disadvantaged youth.

And while MEC Bopape, like her predecessors, continues to ignore this advice, school athletes chosen to represent Gauteng at the South African Schools Championships in Rustenburg were informed two weeks ago that they would be responsible for their own travel and accommodation costs.

The DA will submit further written questions to the MEC, asking for a detailed description of every event hosted, when they were held, and whether any talent identification took place.

We will also ask the MEC to provide us with details of the department’s talent identification systems across the major codes, individual and group coaching clinics, as well as long and medium term mentoring until athletes start competing at major events.


Media enquiries:

Solly Msimanga MPL

DA Gauteng Spokesperson on Sports

060 558 8308

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Gauteng Education Department Rejects PAIA Application

Public Access to Information Act (PAIA)

The DA is highly concerned over the Gauteng Education Department’s continued refusal to fully disclose forensic reports into financial irregularities at 159 schools in the province.Khume Ramulifho, MPL: DA Gauteng Shadow MEC for Education

Two months ago the DA launched an application in terms of the Public Access to Information Act (PAIA) requesting the reports which MEC Lesufi has been refusing to make public for months.

The department’s refusal to release the report is on the basis of protecting the identity of third parties is concerning.

Fraud, Corruption and Whistle-blowers

While the DA appreciates the department’s concern for whistle-blowers, we maintain that it is in the public interest, especially those of parents and teachers at affected schools, to study the contents of these reports.

Fraud and corruption, if left unchecked, will have a severe impact on the quality of life and education of our province’s youth, and parents have the right to make informed choices about where their children should be educated.

By refusing to divulge the contents of forensic reports into fraud and corruption for spurious reasons, the department opens itself to criticism and the public perception that it is not serious about fraud and corruption in our schools.

To this end, the DA will appeal the department’s interest, noting that the public interest overrides the department’s concerns – and that all names of confidential informants be removed from the reports and to disclose the reports to us.

The DA will continue to fight for transparency and will go to every length to expose wrongdoing in Gauteng’s schools.


Media enquiries:

Khume Ramulifho, MPL

DA Gauteng Shadow MEC for Education

082 398 7375

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Member Statement by Kingsol Chabalala MPL to the Gauteng Provincial Legislature on 31 March 2015

Honourable Speaker, I rise to make a member’s statement in terms of Rule 85.

The Petitions Standing Committee of the Gauteng Provincial Legislature, led by the Hon Chairperson Refilwe Mogale, was scheduled to conduct Petitions hearings last Friday and Saturday in Slovoville, Soweto.

Honourable members will know that the hearings formed part of the commemoration of Human Rights Month, with the aim of assisting the public to address their service delivery concerns.

Honourable Speaker, my fellow members and I attended Friday’s proceedings, which were scheduled to get under way by 16h00 – but by 18h00, no local government or education department officials were present as scheduled.

Of even more concern, was the fact that only handful of local residents arrived at the hearing, despite the fact that catering had been arranged and paid for over 400 participants.

Honourable Speaker, public participation is a critical aspect of governance, and the DA is fully committed to engage with residents and deliver on a promise of a better life.

However, by not properly organising participants, and not attending public engagements, the ANC and its government officials are showing its disrespect of the people and their wishes – and reduces public participation to a mere box-ticking exercise.

Honourable Speaker, if this august house wants to stay relevant to the people, it needs to be serious about their needs, and remain committed to resolving them.

Unfortunately Friday’s instance, along with the hundreds of petitions that have remained unattended and unresolved over the years, is steadily eroding the credibility of the Gauteng Provincial Legislature in the eyes of the people.

I thank you.


DA Marches Against Drug Abuse in Daveyton

On Saturday, 28th of March 2015, the Democratic Alliance staged a protest march against the rising incidents of drug abuse and associated criminality in Daveyton.

DA activists marching against drug abuse

Over 300 DA members and supporters marched several kilometers from to the Daveyton Police Station to hand over a memorandum to the South African Police Service, demanding ‎that the Narcotics Bureau be reinstated to deal with drugs and crime intelligence around drugs, as well as more frequent raids of drug dens and visible policing around schools to keep drug dealers away.

The march was a peaceful occurred without incident, and was pre-approved with SAPS along an agreed route, as the DA is a party of the rule of law and supports the rule of law.

The DA will continue to demand that specialised policing units be reinstated to deal with specific crimes and will be pursing the issue through the various councils, legislatures and parliament.

The DA in Daveyton will be running a month long campaign on drug abuse with the community.


Media Enquiries

Ashor Sarupen MPL

DA Constituency Head – Springs / Daveyton

076 334 5147


DA Welcomes Firing of Fake Gauteng Doctors

I welcome the firing of eight Gauteng Health Department employees who were found to have falsified their qualifications.

According to Gauteng Health MEC Qedani Mahlangu, 10 cases were found – three administration clerks, two medical practitioners, two nursing auxiliary officers, two household workers and one porter.

Falsified Qualifications

Eight of these officials had falsified matric certificates and the other two medical qualifications.

Eight officials were dismissed, one given three months without pay and a final warning sanction, and the other is awaiting the appeal process to be concluded.

We Need Details

I am concerned that the two fake doctors may have injured patients who can sue for damages.

We need details about their activities and why they were allowed to practice without their qualifications being checked prior to employment.

Where did they practice, and how many patients did they see? There are claims that there are other fake doctors that need to be exposed.

I will be asking questions on this matter in the Gauteng Legislature.

There should be zero tolerance for people who give false qualifications, and this is especially important in the medical field where patients’ lives are at risk.


Media enquiries:

Jack Bloom MPL

DA Gauteng Shadow MEC for Health

082 333 4222

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Gauteng Transport’s Anti-corruption Drive Must Include Municipalities

During the recent launch of the Gauteng Department of Roads and Transport campaign against fraud and corruption, Transport MEC Ismail Vadi admitted that public cynicism played an important role in inhibiting successful public participation.

The question remains how such a campaign would be enforced, and how deeply committed to rooting out corruption officials in the Department of Roads and Transport are.

According to DA information, two key senior officials responsible for testing, licensing and the issue of permits were not present at the launch, and did not sign the anti-fraud and corruption undertakings.

This must surely be urgently investigated.
The DA believes that the focus of investigations should include local government, and the artificial firewalls between the different spheres of government should fall away to allow wider and more intense scrutiny of corruption on this level.

Although municipal mayoral committee members were allowed to sign the declaration, they were “otherwise engaged” and their future participation is uncertain.

The DA welcomes indications of the successful prosecution of a number of officials for corruption, but one government department playing the game is not enough.

Official corruption is the scourge of job creation and economic growth, and, while MEC Vadi deserves support for his initiative, the entire provincial administration has an obligation to act against corruption.


Media enquiries:

Justus de Goede MPL

DA Gauteng Spokesperson for Transport

060 558 8305

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DA Gauteng Congratulates Miss South Africa Winners

The DA Gauteng warmly congratulates the newly crowned Miss South Africa, Liesl Laurie and her first and second princesses, Refilwe Mthimunye and Ntsiki Mkhize – who all hail from our province – for their spectacular achievement last night.

As constituency head for Midvaal/Lesedi, I wish to make special mention of Ntsiki Mkhize after being crowned Second Princess.

The competition during this pageant was extremely tough, and each and every hopeful competitor showcased their own unique talents and intellect to South Africa at large.

I am certain that, as the knockout stages commenced, residents of Midvaal were at the edges of their seats rooting for Ntsiki.

To be crowned one of South Africa’s three brightest and fairest young women is a phenomenal achievement, and the DA believes that this is only the start of what is going to be Ntsiki’s wonderful career.

All residents of Midvaal are extremely proud of your achievement.


Media enquiries:

Mike Moriarty MPL

DA Gauteng Constituency Head – Midvaal Lesedi

082 492 4410

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Questions Remain About Hlongwa’s Alleged Undeclared Interests

Lifestyle audits should be considered to check whether elected representatives are being truthful when they declare their financial interests every year.

Gauteng Legislature’s Privileges and Ethics Committee Report

This is my proposal following the report of the Gauteng Legislature’s Privileges and Ethics Committee concerning my referral of the alleged undeclared interests of ANC Chief Whip Brian Hlongwa as detailed in court documents.

This report was adopted by the Legislature on Friday last week (click here to view).

According to the report, Integrity Commissioner Ralph Mgijima presented his report, arising from which the Committee noted “that the matter is ‘sub-judice’ in terms of South African law and that it will be prejudicial to the rights of Hon Hlongwa to require him to submit a specific and detailed response in relation to allegations raised in the complaint.”

The Committee acknowledged the status of the investigation as current and on-going pending the outcome of the case which is currently before the South Gauteng High Court, and recommended that the Integrity Commissioner should provide a progress report on the matter in due course.


In my view this highlights the weakness of the current system where little verification is done of the financial interests that are declared annually by each member of the Legislature.

My referral was based on court documents in which the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) alleges inter alia that: “At no time did Mr Hlongwa declare to the Gauteng Legislature the holiday to Cuba, payments towards his new house at Eccleston Crescent, various home renovations, rent-free accommodation, cash, spa treatments or other benefits received from Mr Payne, Mr Smidek, Mr Pillay or their various entities.”(Note: Mr Heinz Smidek is the CEO of the Baoki consortium that won the tender from the Gauteng Health Department for a Health Information System).

It was submitted further that Hlongwa and two senior officials “did not declare these benefits because they were well aware they were not innocently given or received, involved contractors to the GDoH and would attract attention.” (see my letter to Integrity Commissioner Ralph Mgijima below for more details of the alleged undeclared interests).

The assets of the Baoki Consortium have now been forfeited to the NPA as they conceded that they could not provide a defence concerning the alleged role of Mr Smidek in purchasing Hlongwa’s former home at 16A College Drive in Bryanston for R4.6 million as well as other gratifications to Hlongwa in order for him to improperly influence the award of the tender to Baoki.

I am disappointed that the Integrity Commissioner did not ask Hlongwa to reply to any of the allegations which are extremely serious. If he is innocent he could surely have provided a response that would not have prejudiced his case in court.

Court proceedings are unfortunately extremely slow, so Hlongwa will continue to serve as ANC Chief Whip despite strong evidence that he was remiss in not declaring his full interests when he was previously MEC for Health.

Declaration of Interests

I will be proposing that lifestyle audits are done in select cases where MPLs appear to be living well above their declared income.

This should have happened when Hlongwa declared in a story in the Sowetan newspaper in 2007 April headlined “I’m too rich for my job” that he had made 10 times his MEC’s salary from his businesses and could therefore afford a R7.2 million house.

Declaration of interests by politicians will only be effective in detecting possible corruption if they are properly verified. Lifestyle audits will be a valuable addition to methods of detecting unjust enrichment by politicians and civil service staff.


Media enquiries:

Jack Bloom MPL

DA Gauteng Shadow MEC for Health

082 333 4222

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Letter sent to Dr Ralph Mgijima on 6 August 2014.



Dr Ralph Mgijima

Integrity Commissioner

Gauteng Provincial Legislature



Dear Dr Mgijima,




I wish to refer the issue of alleged undeclared interests by Brian Hlongwa MPL as detailed in court documents which have recently featured in the media.

I enclose an affidavit by Thabo Amos Motedi of the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigations which has been lodged in the Johannesburg High Court by the National Director of Public Prosecutions.

This forms part of an application for an asset forfeiture order for a property owned by Mr Hlongwa at 163 Eccleston Crescent in Bryanston, Johannesburg, as well as the forfeiture of claims against the Gauteng Health Department (GHD) by 3P Consulting (Pty) Ltd and the Baoki consortium.

The affidavit deals with the alleged and or suspected corruption of Hlongwa and other officials or former officials of the GHD in relation to contracts between the GHD, 3P, certain subcontractors to 3P and Regiments Healthcare (Pty) Ltd.

It is a lengthy affidavit that describes in detail how 3P won the tender to establish and manage a Project Management Unit (PMU), how this contract was irregularly increased by 20% from the original R60 million, then increased to R138 million and then extended for three years at a further cost  of R273 366 500. During this time, goods and services were procured to the value of R349 732 721.10 for the GHD by 3P in breach of the procurement and financial management provisions of the Constitution and the Public Finance Management Act.

Furthermore, the relationship is described between Hlongwa and Mr Richard Payne and Mr Niven Pillay, the CEOs of 3P and Regiments respectively. Regiments was allegedly irregularly appointed to review the GHD’s Folateng project at a cost of R3 492 768. According to section 13.5 of the affidavit: “Acting either in their private capacity or through corporate entities under their control, Mr Payne and Mr Pillay paid the deposits on a house for Mr Hlongwa at 163 Eccleston Crescent and further paid to renovate Mr Hlongwa’s houses. Mr Payne also provided cash, an overseas holiday, a spa treatment and other benefits to Mr Hlongwa.”

Page 115 of the affidavit deals with Hlongwa’s failure to declare the benefits received to the Gauteng Provincial Legislature.

According to section 353 on page 115: “At no time did Mr Hlongwa declare to the Gauteng Legislature the holiday to Cuba, payments towards his new house at Eccleston Crescent, various home renovations, rent-free accommodation, cash, spa treatments or other benefits received from Mr Payne, Mr Smidek, Mr Pillay or their various entities.”(Note: Mr Heinz Smidek is the CEO of the Baoki consortium that won the tender from the GDH for a Health Information System).

Sections 354, 355 and 356 deal with a previous inquiry by the Legislature’s Integrity Commissioner, and describes how Hlongwa admitted Payne’s assistance in buying his R7.2 million house, but said that he did so as a friend. His lawyer, Mr Siven Samuel refused to answer questions about a R1 million loan by Pillay to purchase the House on the grounds of legal professional privilege.

According to section 356: “There is no evidence of any loan repayment to Mr Payne or Mr Pillay or any of the entities under their control by Mr Hlongwa or his wife or any of the entities under their control. Even if there had been a genuine loan, this was itself a gratification, and ought to have been declared by Mr Hlongwa.”

The submission of section 358 is that Hlongwa and two senior GDH officials “did not declare these benefits because they were well aware they were not innocently given or received, involved contractors to the GDoH and would attract attention.”

Hlongwa’s alleged undeclared benefits include the following:

  • The total amount of R1.5 million paid by Pillay to Brisgo Properties, a company 100% owned by Hlongwa and his wife, to pay towards purchase of the Eccleston Crescent house (see page 81).
  • A further R2.6 million paid by Payne and Pillay towards the Eccleston house (see pages 82 to 84). This was paid through the account of Hongwa’s lawyer, Mr Samuels.
  • The purchase for R4.75 million of Hlongwa’s previous house at College Drive in Bryanston by Kemsing Services (Pty) Ltd, a Cyprus-registered company owned by Smidek. It is alleged that “the timely sale of the College Drive property and the resultant access to the proceeds of the sale constituted a gratification as defined in the Prevention and Combating of Corrupt Activities Act.” (see pages 84 to 88).
  • Free rental when he stayed at the College Drive house after it was sold despite provision for occupational rental of R40 000 per month (see pages 88 to 89).
  • Refurbishment of the College Drive house by Ukwakha Dezign and Creative Building Projects for a total amount of R216 540.37, allegedly paid for by Payne, Pillay and their entities (pages 89/90).
  • Payment of R1 563 674 from Kemsing on 8 May 2009 into Hlongwa’s personal account purportedly for the purchase of furniture but is alleged to be “a cover-up for a cash gratification” (page 90).
  • Payment for renovations to the Eccleston Crescent house amounting to R1 444 382.89 from Pillay, Samule and entities associated with Payne and Pillay (pages 89 to 90).
  • Trip to the Durban July Handicap for Hlongwa and his wife in 2008, including two nights at the Beverley Hills Hotel, paid for by Regiments (pages 92 to 93).
  • Spa treatment for Hlongwa and his wife, complete with limousine transport, on 30 July 2009, paid for by 3P, the value being approximately R8381 (page 111).

All of the above should have been declared in the public declaration of Hlongwa’s interests, but I can find no record of it in the public section of the Register of Members’ Interests for the relevant years. I do not, of course, have access to the confidential section.

I request that you investigate this matter as the apparent failure to declare the above interests would be a major breach of the Code of Conduct.


Yours sincerely,

Jack Bloom


Gauteng Transport MEC fails to deliver on street light promises

Despite numerous requests by the DA and the Bonaero community to the Department of Roads and Transport, street lights at the Atlas road/R21 off-ramp have still not been repaired.

The delayed repairs of street lights along Atlas Road and other roads including Bonaero Drive, Elgin Street and Great North Road, has resulted in these roads becoming hot-spots for hijackers.

Furthermore the Gauteng Legislature’s Roads and Transport Committee recently submitted an urgent request to the department to finalise the road maintenance agreement, which calls for all provincial roads, including those surrounding Atlas Road, to be repaired.

Every day motorists live in fear of hijackings as they drive along these roads, and government needs to act if it wants to live up to its promises of creating a safe and prosperous global city region.

To this end, the DA has submitted further written questions to roads MEC Ismail Vadi, to follow up on the finalization of the maintenance agreement, as well as requesting a breakdown of the roads maintenance budget allocation.

The DA will also present the MEC with a petition signed by residents of Bonaero Park community calling for the MEC’s urgent intervention.


Media enquiries:

Graham Gersbach MPL

DA Constituency Head – Bronberg

060 556 4346

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Carletonville Hospital without Hot Water

During an oversight visit to Carletonville Hospital yesterday, it was disturbing to learn that the hospital had been without any hot water since the end of January.

Despite reports of contractors being assigned to look into the problem, to date, no clear indication was given of when the problem would be resolved, nor what caused the crisis in the first place.

Boil Water in Kettles

At the moment hospital staff are forced to boil water using kettles and urns to avoid having patients washing with cold water.

The responsibility for the maintenance of health facilities in Gauteng lies with the Department of Infrastructure Development headed by MEC Nandi Mayathula-Khoza, and this department has become notoriously infamous for its uncaring attitude, careless spending, missed deadlines and costly disputes with suppliers.

Restoring Order at Carletonville Hospital

The DA calls on MEC Mayathula-Khoza to ensure that order is restored back to Carletonville Hospital without delay.

The DA will submit written questions to MEC Mayathula-Khoza to determine the causes of this crisis and demand that efforts be stepped up to ensure that hot water is restored as soon as possible.


Media enquiries:

Ina Cilliers MPL

DA Constituency Head: Merafong

060 556 4344

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