White Collar Crime Brief – 08/08/2013

8 August 2013|In White Collar Briefs

In this issue:

  • South Africa: Public waste utility company halts tender probe

South Africa: Public waste utility company halts tender probe

A corruption probe into suspect tenders worth R360 million at Pikitup, a state-owned waste utility company, has come to a halt after the company put a stop to the investigation.

A probe into 11 suspicious contracts awarded in 2010 and 2011 was launched after Pikitup workers went on strike to demand an investigation into corruption allegations. Pikitup paid audit firm EY (formerly Ernst & Young) R6 million to investigate tender rigging and then halted the probe in October 2012 before EY could prepare a final report.

Of contracts worth R365.9 million investigated, only one worth R4.3 million was found to be above board. EY found that officials had flouted Treasury rules and contravened municipal finance laws when awarding the rest of the contracts. The utility's former MD who now heads the Universal Service and Access Agency of South Africa, Zami Nkosi, was also accused of not declaring a conflict of interest in a R36.9 million contract awarded to Sula Smart, a company that EY found was linked to his sister.

Asked what steps Pikitup had taken to deal with the report's recommendations, Pikitup spokeswoman Desiree Ntshingila said the utility was still "concluding outstanding work on the recommendations and will then issue a statement".

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