Pretoria – The City of Tshwane will be investigated for poor administration, theft of funds, and corruption by the Special Investigating Unit (SIU).
Announcing the probe on Monday, the SIU said: “President Cyril Ramaphosa has signed Proclamation R 138 of 2023 authorising it to investigate allegations of maladministration and corruption in the affairs of Tshwane Metropolitan Municipality, and to recover any financial losses suffered by the State”.
Proclamation R 138 of 2023 authorises the SIU to probe the procurement and/or contracting for construction of Phase 1 upgrades and urgent refurbishment at the Rooiwal Wastewater Treatment Works.
The SIU said it will also investigate any unauthorised, irregular, or fruitless and wasteful expenditure incurred by Tshwane Metropolitan Municipality or the State.
“The scope of the investigation also covers any unlawful or improper conduct by officials or employees of the Tshwane Metropolitan Municipality, the applicable suppliers or service providers, or any other person or entity,” said the SIU in a statement released by Spokesperson Kaizer Kganyago.
He said the Proclamation covers allegations of unlawful and improper conduct that took place between 1 January 2018 and 22 September 2023, the date of the publication of the Proclamation or before 1 January 2018 and after the date of the Proclamation that is relevant to, connected with, incidental to the matters or involves the same persons, entities or contracts investigated.
“In addition to investigating maladministration, malpractice, corruption, and fraud, the SIU will identify system failures and make systematic recommendations to improve measures to prevent future losses,” the statement said.
In line with the Special Investigating Units and Special Tribunals Act 74 of 1996 (SIU Act), the SIU will refer any evidence pointing to criminal conduct it uncovers during its investigations to the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) for further action.
The investigative unit is empowered by the SIU Act to institute a civil action in the high court or a Special Tribunal in its name to correct any wrongdoing uncovered during its investigation caused by acts of corruption, fraud, or maladministration.
The City has been mired in a labour dispute that has seen employees down tools to press for wage hikes, but Mayor Cilliers Brink insists there is no money to do so.
The strike, which began on 24 July 2023, saw the City fire hundreds of workers. The workers were fired for participating in an “illegal strike”.
In recent weeks trucks belonging to the City have been torched by unknown persons.
Hundreds of striking employees have since been dismissed.
The South African Municipal Workers Union, which represents the fired employees, has vowed to fight the matter.