Official implicated in State capture placed on suspension

A security management official in the Justice and Constitutional Development Department has been placed under precautionary suspension.

This follows an internal forensic investigation implicating the official in the irregular procurement of the services of Global Technology Solutions, formerly known as Bosasa, on behalf of the Zondo Commission of Inquiry into State Capture. 

The company was tasked with handling security for the State capture inquiry.

“The official was placed on precautionary suspension as of this morning, 25 February 2019,” said Minister Michael Masutha at a briefing on various cases of corruption on Monday.

The Department of Justice has also served a letter on another senior official in security management to show why the department should not place her under precautionary suspension, pending the outcome of an investigation into allegations of improper conduct.

“This includes the delay in the procurement of surveillance and monitoring services, which has led to the department incurring irregular expenditure since October 2018 to date,” said Masutha.  

The Secretary of the Zondo Commission has also been placed on special leave pending investigations into allegations of impropriety contained in testimony given before the commission.

On Sondolo IT, a subsidiary of Bosasa, Masutha said his department has contracted the services of audit and advisory firm, Sizwe Ntsaluba-Gobodo, to review all security contracts, with a focus on Bosasa.

In terms of the contract, Sizwe Ntsaluba-Gobodo is expected to complete the review within three months.

In 2008, the department was formally contracted to Sondolo IT for the supply, delivery, installation, commissioning, support and maintenance of a comprehensive CCTV and access control system for court buildings and the head office.

The installation of security infrastructure under this contract was concluded in 2015, followed by a warranty period of 12 months, during which Sondolo IT continued to deliver a mandatory maintenance service. The value of this contract totals R601 863 632.

In September 2015, the contract with Sondolo IT was extended for an additional period of 36 months for corrective and preventative maintenance, as per the original contract. 

This was also covering surveillance monitoring services in the identified high risk court buildings and the main control room at head office. The value of the contract, which ended in September 2018, was R373 709 412, of which the total expenditure is R340 738 014.

“The Security Management section failed to prepare a business case and the requisite tender documents on time for the procurement of these services. 

“Consequently, the security section allowed Sondolo IT to continue rendering these services on a month-to-month basis, pending the finalisation of the necessary business case for the procurement of these services going forward,” said Masutha.

Following the delays in the finalisation of this process, Masutha said his department was left with no option but to keep the services of Sondolo IT, pending the appointment of a new service provider on a quotation basis.

The Minister said the process is expected to be finalised soon.

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