The Special Investigating Unit will lodge an investigation into allegations of corruption and maladministration involving tenders awarded to EOH by the department of water & sanitation (DWS).
The investigation will also serve to recover potential financial losses suffered by the state, the SIU said. This comes after President Cyril Ramaphosa signed a proclamation authorising the probe.
In a statement, the SIU said the investigation would focus on the procurement of (or contracting) and implementation of four IT contracts that were awarded by the department to EOH and its subsidiaries to the value of R474-million. The contracts were awarded between 2012 and 2017.
The SIU has been authorised to investigate four IT contracts awarded to EOH and its subsidiaries by Dept. of Water and Sanitation to the value of R474 million and to recover any financial losses suffered by the State. SIU is working with #StateCaptureInquiry on the matter. pic.twitter.com/JI9bJEvbji
— Special Investigating Unit (SIU) (@RSASIU) August 5, 2021
“The matters came to the attention of SIU during its investigation into the affairs of DWS, which were directed by proclamation R27 of 2018, as amended by proclamation R44 of 2019.”
The SIU was also contacted by EOH with the purpose of informing the SIU and sharing information pertaining to the alleged fraud and corruption involving former employees of its subsidiary, EOH Mthombo, and third parties who allegedly colluded with officials of department in relation to contracts that EOH had concluded with it.
The investigation was aimed at determining whether the procurement and payments made in relation to the contracts were done in a manner that was fair, competitive, transparent, equitable and cost-effective, or contrary to applicable legislation and guidelines issued by national treasury.
The scope of SIU investigation also covers alleged unlawful or improper conduct of DWS employees. “The SIU has been and will continue working closely with the Commission of Inquiry into State Capture in the investigation of this matter.
“The investigation will cover transactions that took place between 1 January 2012 and 30 July 2021, the publication date of the proclamation. Transactions that either took place before January 2012 or after 30 July but relevant to, connected with same persons, entities or contracts being investigated will also form part of the SIU investigation,” said the SIU.
The proclamation authorises the SIU to use all its legislative powers to subpoena bank statements and cellphone records, search and seize evidence, and interrogate witnesses under oath in an effort to hold those who are allegedly responsible for financial losses to account for their actions.
The SIU will refer any criminal conduct it uncovers in its investigation to the National Prosecuting Authority and the Hawks for further action.