South African chief orders COVID-19 corruption probe

Last updated on September 11th, 2021 at 08:31 am

South Africa’s president has licensed the Special Investigating Unit (SIU) to start probing allegations related to the misuse of COVID-19 funds, Cyril Ramaphosa advised Parliament Thursday. 

“The allegations of corruption in the procurement of items and offerings for our country’s response to the coronavirus pandemic has prompted outrage among South Africans and amongst us in the executive,” Ramaphosa stated whilst responding to questions in the National Assembly.

Some of the complaints raised towards officials and corporations are associated to the manufacture of face masks, the distribution of food parcels and siphoning dollars fraudulently via supposed recognition campaigns.

“It is disgraceful that at this time of national crisis, there are businesses and persons who are seeking for to criminally benefit from our efforts to defend people’s health and shop lives,” Ramaphosa instructed legislators.

He said the work of the SIU investigations is taking vicinity alongside the these days established distinct coordination center aimed to enhance the collective efforts among law-enforcement agencies to prevent, detect, check out and prosecute COVID-related corruption.

He stated the National Treasury has taken fine steps to tighten procurement regulations.

“These measures will beef up the ongoing work of the Auditor-General to audit, in actual time, all COVID expenditure,” he said.

The South Africa chief stated the biggest defense towards corruption in public procurement is to make the entire process greater transparent and open to public scrutiny.

“In an important first step in the direction of that goal, Cabinet set up a ministerial crew to bring together and collate a complete report of the small print of all tenders and contracts awarded by using national departments, provincial governments and different public entities as phase of the response to the coronavirus pandemic,” Ramaphosa said.

South Africa, the world’s fifth worst-hit usa from the coronavirus, has registered a complete of 618,286 cases, the best possible on the continent.

The death toll in the us of a has risen to 13,628.