Clean audit does not absolve Ekurhuleni Metro’s sins

January 15, 2015

Sarupen,-AshorThe Democratic Alliance notes the clean audit that the Ekurhuleni Metro (EMM) achieved year and congratulates the ANC-run metro for getting its financial reporting together.

To gloat over its clean audit, the ANC-administration has spent thousands of rands of tax payer’s money on advertising billboards along the R21 highway near OR Tambo International as well as advertisement slots on radio stations.

This clean audit however does not absolve the EMM of past major instances of corruption:

  • The irregular procurement of smart water meters in 2011/12, at a cost of R214 million, still remains unresolved and would appear that the EMM has consciously made an effort to bury this issue;
  • The appointment of a consultancy firm to undertake an institutional review of its staffing structure for more than R40-million, despite the EMM’s legal department recommending against it. Little information has been made public and no arrests have been made. This too remains unresolved;
  • The failure to recover of legal fees amounting to R12 million paid to the legal team of former metro police chief, and now IPID boss, Mr Robert McBride. Legal aid paid for EMM employees is capped at R10 000. A report by the Kwa-Zulu Natal Law Society found that Mr McBride’s legal fees were inflated and monies should be recovered. The matter remains unresolved and appears to be swept under the carpet;
  • In 2011, the Hawks arrested two Ekurhuleni metro officials for alleged ICT tender fraud amounting to R32 million. This appears to be the only matter that has been pursued to near completion, but raises questions as to how the metro’s systems allowed this to happen in the first place;
  • On 2 October 2012, in the National Assembly, President Zuma stated that of three municipalities under investigation by the SIU in Gauteng, EMM fared the worst, detailing investigations into irregular contracts, ghost employees, employees doing business with the municipality and other illegal activities.

It is clear that the EMM has failed to safeguard against corruption and ANC cronyism. One clean audit cannot absolve the metro of it past sins.

As a DA Ekurhuleni councillor from 2011 to 2014, I tabled a motion demanding that the metro open its tender processes up to public and media scrutiny.

The motion was rejected outright by the ANC. It is high time that the metro makes public all information around the corruption scandals it is involved in.

The DA will continue to monitor the progress made into all reports of corruption within the municipality and ensure the public are made aware of the scandals that the ANC want to sweep under the rug.

Media enquiries:
Ashor Sarupen
DA Gauteng Finance Committee Member
060 558 8303