Johannesburg – The Northwestern Department of Human Settlements is in the spotlight over allegations of collusion with a cabal of companies that are still winning lucrative construction contracts.
Departmental sources told the Sunday Independent that an investigation has been launched to find out why the same companies are still receiving multi-million Rand contracts.
“An internal investigation was opened after some entrepreneurs complained that they were sidelined and awarded small projects, but some companies were getting lucrative contracts every year,” a source said under cover of anonymity.
“An internal investigation is underway, but how far it is and who has been fingered remains a mystery. It seems that those involved are protected from above. “
The ministry’s attempts to comment were unsuccessful.
The sources said the matter was also being considered by the provincial legislature’s portfolio committee on the premier, finance, cooperative governance, human settlements and traditional affairs. President Aaron Motswana has confirmed that they are considering “a cartel” in the construction of housing in the province.
“There is a cartel that operates mainly in Dr Kenneth Kaunda and the district of Bojanala. You don’t have people who are from Ngaka Modiri Molema District Municipality and Dr Ruth Segomotsi Mompati.
“Entrepreneurs from these regions are always outsourced. The majority of companies that get deals come from Klerksdorp and those companies don’t even have the capacity, ”he said.
Motswana said it was strange that the majority of companies fail to deliver and complete their projects, but are rewarded with contracts ranging from R30 million and above.
“These people get these contracts and it is because they are used for political adventurism and they fund these activities,” he said.
The department’s housing division has been besieged by scandals in recent weeks. He is being taken to court over a R30 million contract that was concluded without following proper procedures. The property developer requests payment for a modification / addition to a housing contract.
The agreement was said to have been approved without being accompanied by an expert report.
Sources said another issue was that the company had been recommended to receive the supplement, which was allegedly signed by housing chief Vusi Bidi, while the department head was not around. this week.
Bidi comes under scrutiny after the Auditor General and the Ministry of Civil Service and Administration flagged his appointment to the post and recommended that he not be chief director because he did not a national diploma whereas the position requires a diploma or qualification of level 7 NQ. .