24 August 2020
African National Congress (ANC) President Cyril Ramaphosa sent an eight-page open letter to ANC members that the party must confront the stark reality that it is now “accused number one” for corruption. The president wrote the letter because several senior party members are accused of PPE tender fraud. They include his spokesperson Khusela Diko, his son Andile, as well as Gauteng MEC for Health Bandile Masuku and his wife Loyiso.
the Special Investigative Unit (SIU) is currently investigating over $3 billion worth of government contracts which may have been awarded to those linked to government officials, or where the proper due diligence was not exercised.
The Sunday Times reported that a politically connected person made as much as an 800% profit in selling PPE products through a proxy company to Gauteng Health Department. The department concerned did not report the exorbitant price to the investigating authorities. The SIU has obtained an order freezing about $20 million worth of assets that it said are the proceeds of corrupt Covid-19 PPE contracts between the proxy company, and the health department.
ANC has started its own investigations of its members who are involved in corrupt activities. The national executive committee (NEC) took a decision that the party’s officials oversee an audit of members facing charges or disciplinary cases, and make recommendations whether they should step down. ANC secretary-general Ace Magashule has given the members five days to declare their assets, shareholding, directorships of companies and income and any pending police investigations.
Ace Magashule, the party’s secretary-general has been implicated in the recent Covid-19 tenders going to the politically linked, with his sons receiving millions of Rands worth of contracts over the last few months. One of his sons, Tshepiso “Gift” Magashule, was employed as a consultant by the Gupta family since November 2010, shortly after Duduzane Zuma was brought under their influence. In 2011 Gift was appointed as a director in a Gupta company, earning R90,000 a month. In 2015 a busy Shell fuel station in Phuthaditjhaba, owned by the Free State Development Corporation (FDC), was acquired by Ace’s 27-year old daughter Thoko Alice Malembe. As the deal involved an R11.5 million upfront rental fee from Shell, and a purchase price of R2.9 million, reportedly below its market value, it resulted in a windfall of some R8.9 million for Malembe’s MMAT trust.
Malembe’s Botlokwa Holdings managed to secure a series of government tenders and property deals from the Free State provincial government.
There is a widespread belief that neither the government nor the ANC has the will to deal with the PPE corruption.
National Police are also investigation their own PPE contracts worth $330 million for any fraud. However, the police have confirmed that it had done business with companies investigated for PPE corruption.
The South African Reported.