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SIU gains ground against corruption

Written by Kgaogelo Letsebe

The SIU is working hard to recoup state funds lost through corruption, fraud and maladministration.

Heeding President Cyril Ramaphosa’s call to accelerate the fight against nationwide corruption, the Special Investigating Unit (SIU) has cracked a few high-profile cases with help from callers to the Whistle- Blower Hotline.

The SIU conducts investigations at the President's request and reports to him and Parliament on the outcomes.

Its primary mandate is to recover and prevent financial losses to the State caused by acts of corruption, fraud and maladministration. 

The SIU Whistle-Blower Hotline, where most tipoffs are received, was formally established in 2018 in collaboration with Whistle-Blowers (Pty) Ltd. 

In 2020, the SIU was authorised to investigate allegations of unlawful conduct with respect to Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) procurement by all state bodies during the National State of Disaster.

Allegations reported to the unit include irregular procurement.

Kaizer Kganyago, the head of stakeholder relations and communications at the SIU, says the Whistle-Blower Hotline has proven to be resourceful. 

“South Africans need to know that corruption has detrimental effects on government's ability to deliver basic services like water, housing, education, roads, healthcare and electricity. As a result, all of us must join hands and fight against corruption by speaking out and reporting all allegations of corruption,” he says.

Callers do not have to reveal their identity as reporting is 100% anonymous.

During his recent State of the Nation Address, President Ramaphosa said fighting corruption is one of the four priorities this year.

To date, the SIU has finalised investigations into 164 contracts, with a value of R3.5 billion, he adds.

The President says although much progress has been made in the past three years, corruption remains one of the greatest impediments to the country’s growth and development.

 “There has been great progress in turning around law enforcement bodies. Critical leadership positions have been filled with capable, experienced and trustworthy professionals. We have [also] started the implementation of the National Anti-Corruption Strategy, which lays the basis for a comprehensive and integrated society-wide response to corruption. Tackling crime [and corruption] is central to the success of our recovery,” the President says.   

To report crime and corruption, place a free call to 0800 037 774, SMS: 33490 or email siu@whistleblowing.co.za.