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Trollip: Education MEC must account for tender interference claims

Trollip: Education MEC must account for tender interference claims

Democratic Alliance (DA) Eastern Cape Leader, and National Federal Chairperson, Athol Trollip, has blasted the provincial Education department after a weekend newspaper obtained incriminating transcripts of two senior officials, discussing tenders before it was to be made public.

On Saturday, the Daily Dispatch reported that a cellphone voice clip made three month ago in the office of former provincial Head of Treasury, Marion Mbina-Mthembu, now Director-General in the office of Premier Phumulo Masualle, shows her having a conversation with Acting Education Superintendent-General, Raymond Tywakadi, about how Provincial ANC Secretary, Oscar Mabuyane, wanted the handing over of a tender to group known only as his “boys from Ngcobo”.

According to the subsequent article, one of the contracts, reported to be worth R20-million, was for a catering service to a hostel while the second was for a school nutrition programme in which government had reportedly invested over R1-billion each year.

Both Tywakadi and Mbina-Mthembu have confirmed that the voices on the recordings were theirs, but stopped short of admitting that the tender had gone thorough.

“The allegations are very serious and point not only to external meddling, but also to the apparent compliance by senior officials to external instructions from overreaching politicians to internal tender processes, despite the provisions of laws such as the Public Finance Manage Act (PFMA),” Trollip said in a statement.

“Corruption in the Department of Education is not only a blight on the department, it results in the education outcomes of our future generations being compromised. In this regard it would appear that “compliance cadres” are being manipulated by the very people that ensure their appointment to their position of authority”.

He also stated that the accusations showcase a “disturbing illustration of cadre deployment where beneficiaries of this policy are forced to “repay” those that deploy them with tender-favours”.

“Education is the foundation of opportunity and corruption cannot be allowed to directory compromise our youth’s future. MEC [Mandla] Makupula [must therefore] act swiftly and decisively if he is serious about his department’s reputation and responsibility to educate the future generations”.


IMAGE sourced from africacheck.org