File picture: Bhekikhaya Mabaso African News Agency (ANA)
JOHANNESBURG -  Outa on Tuesday commended Eskom’s decision to act against Deloitte Consulting over what Eskom described as grossly irregular or corrupt contracts to the tune of over R207m.

“The extent of unnecessary and overpaid contracts to advisory and consulting companies for supposed work done on behalf of state organisations is responsible for a significant amount of wasteful expenditure and corruption in South Africa,” says Wayne Duvenage, Outa’s CEO.  

“One of the easiest ways to get funds out of the public purse –  be it a state-owned entity, government department or a municipality –  is to enter into tenders and contracts with external consulting companies, where the contract prices are often inflated and ‘profits’ shared between the parties.”

Outa says they welcome Eskom’s inclusion of its own former executives as targets in this legal action such as former CFO Anoj Singh, who has been deeply implicated in state capture.

"We imagine that Eskom has done its homework and would not bring such charges and accusations if these were not founded on substantive evidence," Outa said in a statement. 

“What we ask of all private sector advisory and legal companies, is to get external forensic auditors to scrutinise all past work invoiced to the state, and to ensure that the work obtained did not incur facilitation fees and the work billed for was actually carried out and provided value to the state,” says Duvenage.

“Anything untoward should be viewed as possible corruption and investigated thoroughly and, if detected, the public will look more favourably on those companies who self detect and own up, as opposed to being caught out later.”

BUSINESS REPORT ONLINE