Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Cipro investigated for fraud and corruption

Cipro investigated for fraud and corruption
The Department of Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies said on Friday several law enforcement agencies are probing allegations of fraud and corruption at state-owned agency Cipro.

The suspected scam relates to the creation of false companies in the Cipro database and to defraud Sars of VAT.

The troubled agency is also been accused of tender-rigging amounting to millions of rands.

Four Cipro officials have been fired and two suspended following reports of corruption and fraud at the agency.

Davies told members of parliament on Friday his department’s forensic investigation at Cipro had provided a broad picture of the corruption issues that centred around the ease with which people had been able to hack into systems to manipulate information.

He said the new electronic content management system was designed to prevent the very kinds of fraud the forensic investigation had revealed.

“We remain convinced that it is probably the best available technology which would at least avoid some of the situations,” he said.

He shrugged off criticism from the opposition that the ministry is dragging its feet in dealing with the matter.

He said the department is looking at legal advice on how best to handle the matter.

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