Friday, February 4, 2011
'Include council in tenders probe'
February 4 2011 at 03:36pm
By Babalo Ndenze
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A fan blows a vuvuzela on Signal Hill with Cape Town Stadium in the background. Photo: Sam Clark
Unions and the national government have added to criticism of the alleged rigging of tenders for World Cup stadiums and other infrastructure projects, with calls to have the City of Cape Town investigated for “gross incompetence”.
Cosatu, its biggest affiliate the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM), and Transport Minister S’bu Ndebele have also voiced concerns. Ndebele said the possibility that the country was robbed “leaves a bitter taste in my mouth”.
Cosatu provincial secretary Tony Ehrenreich called for a forensic investigation into collusion and price fixing at the Cape Town Stadium.
“We are opposed to any cosy political deal, where corruption is found. We believe that any corrupt issues should be tested in court, where a case exists,” said Ehrenreich.
He said the City of Cape Town should be included in the investigation, “as a distinct possibility exists that they may be involved or guilty of gross incompetence”.
“The absence of due diligence in this kind of deal raises serious governance questions. The kind of escalations in the price for the building of the stadium should have raised serious doubts with the most inexperienced accountant. These escalations bore no relation to the inflation rate or any additions that may have been requested,” he said.
Ehrenreich said the investigation should go as far back as the time when Premier Helen Zille was the mayor.
“This neglect is criminal when billions of rands are wasted while the majority of our people live in poverty”.
NUM said that the five big construction companies accused of rigging tenders should not get government contracts again.
Basil Read, Murray and Roberts, Aveng, Wilson Bayly Holmes and Group Five have been implicated and are now in settlement talks with the Competition Commission.
Ndebele said he was “distressed and concerned” that the companies had been found to have colluded on the costing of World Cup projects.
“We are equally shocked and saddened at this news which, according to the Competition Commission, resulted in the taxpayer paying more for the World Cup infrastructure,” said Ndebele.
He said the department of transport would be spending billions in taxpayers’ money on a number of projects over the next 20 years.
“Our programmes will transform our country forever… Corporates cannot be allowed to subvert our national objectives for narrow, corrupt self-interests. The transformation question is whether we have alternatives.
“Do we have significant new entrants who are big enough? What is the rate at which we are creating new construction companies with sufficient muscle? We would like to work with industry partners who are genuine about transformation,” he said. - Cape Times
Comments by Sonny
Start at the top and work your way down!!
All rotten apples........!