SIU leadership’s presentation abysmal – Debbie Schafer

da-logoDA MP says information provided to parliamentary committee vague and of poor quality

SIU – where to in our fight against corruption?

The performance of the Special Investigating Unit at the Justice Portfolio Committee this morning was nothing short of abysmal.

The Unit appeared before us to present its Annual Performance Plan, Strategic Plan and Budget. All it projected was a unit in disarray after losing some of its senior staff members, with no leadership. The plan itself was threadbare to say the least, with a number of the targets that were given being substantially reduced.

Whereas previously we would be provided with detail about the various investigations and progress, today all we saw was a series of diagrams with a few figures in between. When the acting head, Adv Nomvula Mokhatla, was asked for more information, between herself and her acting Projects Director, Paul Modipa, they could give very little. Mokhatla did not inspire any confidence that she is on top of issues at the SIU.

Of particular significance was the admission by Mr Modipa that, in the case of an investigation into the North West Province, governed by the ANC, the SIU has given progress reports to the MEC, whereas in the investigations into the Swellendam municipality, and the George, Stellenbosch and Oudtshoorn municipalities in the Western Cape, they have given no information to the DA MEC, Anton Bredell, despite repeated requests for same.

This only serves to further heighten our concerns regarding the politicisation of vital institutions in our struggle against the tide of corruption sweeping our country.

The DA takes no delight in pointing out that we have been warning of the SIU’s downward spiral for about a year now, and it was very apparent today.

Despite reports over the weekend that the President is finally set to appoint a permanent head of the SIU after Mokhatla’s acting stint of sixteen months, still no announcement has been forthcoming. The President must take direct responsibility for his irresponsible actions in respect of the SIU, and the consequent negative impact it must have on the fight against corruption in South Africa.

Statement issued by Debbie Schafer MP, DA Shadow Deputy Minister of Justice and Constitutional Development, April 24 2013

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