Madonsela meets opposition parties

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Thuli madonsela Independent Newspapers (File image) Public Protector Thuli Madonsela. Photo: Masi Losi

Corruption in the awarding of tenders for RDP houses topped the agenda as Public Protector Thuli Madonsela held a meeting with leaders of opposition parties.

Madonsela's office said in a statement that she had a meeting with the leaders on Friday where she gave feedback on the issues raised by people during her stakeholder dialogues and public hearings across the country.

The dialogues sought public inputs on a systemic investigation into Reconstruction and Development Programme (RDP) housing and alleged regulatory failures regarding the illegal conversion of panel vans into taxis, Madonsela's office said on Saturday.

Members of the public were also asked to make representations on other service delivery matters that affected them.

On the RDP housing, Madonsela identified major complaints as planning, procurement, allocation and poor infrastructure plans before construction.

She said many settlements were built without basic facilities such as water, sanitation, electricity and roads.

“In one province we found settlements without water, sanitation and electricity for up to eight years. Not very far away, there was a settlement with only toilets that had running water but no houses or occupants,” she told opposition leaders.

“A lot of procurement complaints point to endemic irregular and even corrupt procurement practices and fraud, including false billing in relation to quality assurance and invoicing.”

Other complaints about RDP houses included allocation to older persons, child-headed homes and back-room dwellers.

Communities also complained about RDP houses not being user-friendly to people with disabilities.

Madonsela received complaints about the illegal conversion of panel vans which seemed to point fingers at government, car dealers and banks.

She announced that she was planning to meet Santaco (SA National Taxi Council) on this and other taxi industry concerns.

Other issues brought to her attention were bad conduct of police, health workers and traditional leaders.

She said her office was already investigating some of the allegations brought forward.

The opposition parties applauded the Madonsela for the proactive promotion of good governance, particularly the act of giving organs of state an opportunity to remedy problems without an investigation.

The parties committed themselves to joining hands with her to end maladministration.

A voices and views report would be released which would present what people said.

Madonsela would also meet banks and cell phone companies to conduct outstanding inspections. - Sapa


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