Outa calls on SIU to be ruthless when probing corruption at water boards

The Organisation Undoing Tax Abuse (Outa) has called for the Special Investigating Unit (SIU) to be ruthless when it comes to its investigations into maladministration at the water boards in Limpopo and Eastern Cape.

Water boards investigation

This after the SIU last Wednesday said its probing alleged corruption and maladministration at the Lepelle Northern Water Board in Limpopo and Amatola Water Board in the Eastern Cape.

This is not the first time the SIU is investigating the Lepelle Northern Water Board. In 2018 it probed claims of corruption with a drilling borehole and water treatment project.

The project started in August 2016 to supply water to 55 villages, but in October 2018 the budget reached R3.5 billion and the villages still did not have water.

Julius Kleynhans, the Executive Manager for Social Innovation at Outa, said corruption in drought relief services is a crime against humanity and should be prosecuted.

“It is sickening to see how the corrupt prey on innocent people when they are most vulnerable and in need. Depriving people from access to water or drought relief must be deemed a crime against humanity and the state,” said Kleynhans.

SIU probing procurement of contract

The SIU is looking into the awarding of the contract meant for drought relief services and technologies by the water boards.

It is also probing if the payments were made in a fair, transparent and cost-effective manner.

It will also look into the conduct of board members, officials or employees of the water boards as well as officials or employees of the Ministry of Human Settlements, Water and Sanitation.

Kleynhans said the SIU must ensure the people responsible for the corruption are brought to book.

“We call on the public to support the SIU and provide its investigators, or Outa, with real evidence that can add value to the SIU’s pursuit of holding the corrupt accountable within the scope of this investigation,” added Kleynhans.

NOW READ: SIU raids Lepelle water board for R3.5bn Giyani water project files

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