Scopa chairperson Mkhuleko Hlengwa. Picture: Bongani Mbatha/African News Agency (ANA)
Scopa chairperson Mkhuleko Hlengwa. Picture: Bongani Mbatha/African News Agency (ANA)

Scopa wants open tenders following claims of Covid-19 looting

By Siyabonga Mkhwanazi Time of article published Aug 8, 2020

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Cape Town - Parliament's finance watchdog, the Standing Committee on Public Accounts, has called for open tenders following the Covid-19 looting scandal that has rocked the country.

Scopa chairperson Mkhuleko Hlengwa said on Saturday they want to tighten measures to stop the looting of the public purse.

The call by Scopa comes after reports of widescale looting of Covid-19 funds by politically connected people.

Hlengwa said they want the public adjudication of tenders.

He said they noted the outbreak of Covid-19 has led to the state to use emergency procurement processes but this has been mired in controversy since the allegations of fraud and corruption emerged.

"Scopa has noted that the emergency deviation process, which was allowed and necessary in order to expedite procurement of goods and services for the pandemic, has been muddled with fraud and corruption," said Hlengwa in a statement.

"The committee is aware that the normal procurement processes require the creation of three bid committees, namely the specification committee, the evaluation committee and the adjudication committee. It is for this reason that the committee (Scopa) believes that moving forward, for purposes of compliance and to minimise unethical and corrupt practices, the open tender framework as outlined in regulations and note 3 of 2016/17 of the National Treasury must be applied. This will ensure transparency and good governance with regard to emergency procurement. The process of deviation must revert back the normal processes," said Hlengwa.

President Cyril Ramaphosa has appointed a Cabinet committee led by Justice Minister Ronald Lamola to investigate Covid-19 corruption. But opposition parties that this would not attain the required results.

Political Bureau

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