Durban - The head of eThekwini’s disaster management and emergency control unit, Vincent Ngubane, is being investigated for alleged fraud and corruption totalling almost R50 million.
The matter has been handed over to the city’s integrity and investigations department, the chief audit executive head, the city manager and, most recently, Public Protector Thuli Madonsela.
In documents seen by the Sunday Tribune, it was revealed that Ngubane:
* duplicated municipal orders to the value of R1.19m for the installation of a new fibre route from uMhlanga to Watson Circle;
* misused other municipal funds;
* inflated the cost of contracts, representing an overcharge;
* overspent the annual Exco CCTV capital budget of R2.7m by 149 percent;
* failed to comply with supply chain management policies;
* replaced qualified professionals by creating ghost work for under-qualified staff;
* awarded emergency contracts (which did not have to go to tender) to an “underqualified” company.
The documents reflect in excess of R50m worth of irregular expenditure within five months.
When asked to comment, Ngubane denied the allegations and said he was not even aware of them.
“This is a joke. I am unaware of what is going on. I refuse to say anything further.”
A well-placed source within the municipality said the allegations were brought to the attention of Ngubane and detailed information was submitted to the relevant authorities in December. But nothing has been done about it so far.
“There is proof of what Ngubane has been up to. Everything is documented. A forensic auditor needs to be appointed to get to the bottom of this. It has been four months since this was brought to the attention of authorities.”
Spokeswoman for the eThekwini Municipality, Tozi Mthetwa, said the municipality cannot discuss details pertaining to internal investigations.
“Such matters are confidential between the employer and employee,” she said.
However, the Sunday Tribune has seen proof that the documents were submitted and received by the city manager, the city’s investigations department, and the chief audit executive head for investigation.
On Friday the complaint was forwarded to the office of the public protector.