Head of the Special Investigating Unit Advocate Andy Mothibi. File picture: Siyabulela Duda/GCIS
Head of the Special Investigating Unit Advocate Andy Mothibi. File picture: Siyabulela Duda/GCIS

Scopa orders SIU, UIF and Employment and Labour to meet over disagreement on TERS investigation

By Mayibongwe Maqhina Time of article published Nov 24, 2021

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Cape Town – Parliament has ordered the Special Investigating Unit (SIU), the Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF) and the Department of Employment and Labour to meet within 10 days on the investigations done by the corruption-busting body.

The Standing Committee on Public Accounts (Scopa) gave the instruction after UIF acting head Mzie Yawa raised concerns about media reports ascribed to the SIU that about 6 000 civil servants were receiving Temporary Employment Relief Scheme (TERS) payments.

Yawa said there were even comments that UIF was sleeping on duty, and the report UIF has was that those matters were not investigated by SIU but by Hawks.

“They are still under investigation and there is no report and therefore there is no consequence we can take,” he said.

SIU head Andy Mothibi said he noted Yawa held a different view.

“We got no issue with that. It will serve us well if these matters are raised directly with us so we interact with the department and the UIF, if there is reconciliation (to be done) so we can apprise them where we come from with the report.

“We still stand with our report,” Mothibi said.

Scopa chairperson Mkhuleko Hlengwa said the entities were speaking past each other.

Hlengwa noted there were shortcomings at UIF and a lack of co-ordination within the security cluster in the protection and flow of information.

“The UIF, the department and the SIU must set up a meeting between yourselves within 10 days to thrash out all these issues and find each other,” he said.

Hlengwa said they should report back to Scopa indicating if there was disagreement so that the matter could be closed.

“The investigations must be concluded. One thing you must not do is speak through the media. It is the highest level of unprofessionalism to engage through intermediaries,” he said.

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