Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane. Picture Henk Kruger/ANA/African News Agency
Johannesburg - Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane has made damning findings in her investigation report into maladministration at the Independent Communications Authority of SA (Icasa).

In her report released on Monday, Mkhwebane ordered civil recoveries for losses incurred and that the Hawks investigate financial mismanagement, among other things.

The investigation was instituted after her office received 11 complaints in July 2016 into alleged financial mismanagement and irregular procurement at Icasa.

Mkhwebane said the allegation that Icasa implemented 23% salary increases for its executives without proper approval in 2016 was not substantiated.

She also said the allegation that the former chief executive improperly arranged and paid R133 065 for a strategy session at Fairway Hotel and Spa and Golf Club was substantiated because the deviation process followed by Icasa was not motivated in line with supply chain management policy and the National Treasury practice note.

Mkhwebane made similar findings with R428 520 spent for strategic session at Bon Hotel in October 2015 and R14 250 spent for a strategy session by Service Line Production in 2015.

She also found that the R507 612 spent on a management strategic session in Centurion in 2016 did not follow tender processes as well as R311 756 spent in Switzerland for 300 people in February 2016.

The public protector found R700000 spent on an Icasa value launch day in 2016 was also done without procurement processes, and the procurement of Remuneration Consultants of South Africa in 2015 for R100000 was procured through sourcing a single quotation for R48500, which was amended to R60177 and not R100000 as alleged.

Mkhwebane also found that the Icasa council failed to take action on the reported allegations when it was brought to its attention.

She ordered Communications Minister Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams to monitor the implementation of her remedial action.

Mkhwebane said the chairperson should institute civil proceedings against the former chief executive for the recovery of expenses incurred irregularly due to his conduct, in violation of the Public Finance Management Act (PFMA).

The Icasa executive committee, supply chain management officials and managers involved in procurement should attend a training course in public procurement.

Mkhwebane also ordered the Hawks to investigate criminal conduct against implicated officials for financial mismanagement in violation of the PFMA.

Icasa spokesperson Paseka Maleka said the report had been received and was currently receiving attention by the council.

“It is also important to state that some of the proposed remedial actions have already been implemented and continue to be.”

He also said Icasa would soon issue a statement on how the other matters would be addressed moving forward.