One report cleared former mayor Patricia de Lille of wrongdoing, while a second one recommended that she, along with former mayoral committee member for transport and urban development Brett Herron and suspended transport commissioner Melissa Whitehead, be criminally charged.
Cape Town - Cape Town ratepayers footed a R3.1 million bill on a forensic investigation by law firm Bowmans to investigate corruption at the City, but reached two different conclusions.

City spokesperson Priya Reddy said the initial quote by Bowmans was for an amount up to R3.1m excluding VAT.

“Due to events which came to light during the investigation, it was necessary to broaden the scope of the project by an amount of a quoted R822 600. The final amount to be paid to Bowmans is to be confirmed as aspects of the investigation are still to be completed,” Reddy said.

“In addition to this, the investigation is not yet complete so the cost is not finalised,” she said, adding that so far Bowmans had done work for 10 months.

The final forensic reports were received by the councillors two weeks ago. One report cleared former mayor Patricia de Lille of wrongdoing, while a second one recommended that she, along with former mayoral committee member for transport and urban development Brett Herron and suspended transport commissioner Melissa Whitehead, be criminally charged.

Asked why there were two reports, Reddy said one investigation had a limited scope while the other had a much broader one.

Herron said ratepayers had funded two conflicting Bowmans investigations.

“Those two reports must have cost tens of millions of rand. Information sent to me shows that Bowmans charged the City R7 150 539 for three months of work between December 1, 2017 and February 28, 2018. Oddly, the record of payments to them after February 28 is not accessible,” Herron claimed.

Herron said it was ironic that Bowmans attempted to implicate him in wrongdoing in a deviated procurement process.

“This when they themselves were appointed to conduct this investigation through a deviated procurement process. The procurement report is redacted, as is the identity and bid of the other supplier who was considered for this investigation,” he said.

DA City deputy caucus leader JP Smith said he was not aware of the cost involved in the report.

“Forensic investigations are expensive and, to make things more difficult for us, they came up with two reports with the same findings but different conclusions as to who was responsible to report the allegations of corruption. This added injury to insult and it did not help,” Smith said.

ANC City council leader Xolani Sotashe said the investigation needed to be conducted but the delays and political interference overshadowed the matter.

“We saw this report only pointed to certain figures within the City. There are several other issues which needed to be addressed,” Sotashe said.

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Cape Argus