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Suspended officials a big cost to taxpayers

By Anna Majavu | Jul 08, 2010 | COMMENTS [ 0 ]

THE public is paying millions to keep allegedly corrupt prisons officials at home on full pay.

Correctional Services Minister Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula revealed this in a parliamentary reply yesterday. She said the suspension of former prisons chief financial officer Patrick Gillingham had so far cost over R1,4 million.

Gillingham was suspended on full pay in September 2008. The Special Investigations Unit is wrapping up investigations into allegations that the Bosasa group of companies earned over R1billion in prisons contracts by allegedly bribing Gillingham with R2,1million worth of cars for him and his children, rugby tickets, an overseas trip, a new kitchen and house renovations.

In exchange for the alleged bribes, Gillingham allegedly rigged four tenders to the advantage of Bosasa.

Suspended Gauteng prisons commissioner Thozama Mqobi-Balfour, who is also wife of former correctional services minister Ngconde Balfour, has so far cost the taxpayer nearly R400000.

She was suspended in January this year for renting a house on a golf estate for R30000 a month.

Mapisa-Nqakula said she did not know when the cases would be wrapped up.

She said the case against Gillingham would only continue in September this year, while Mqobi-Balfour would face the disciplinary committee again next week.


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