Mchunu guns for corrupt officials

KwaZulu-Natal MEC for education Senzo Mchunu has announced the appointment of an independent forensic investigation into allegations that department officials misused R86million.

The South African Democratic Teachers Union (Sadtu) made startling allegations of corruption, especially in the Umlazi district.

Sadtu accused senior officials in the district of misusing R86million allocated for learners' transport and relating to procurement.

The claims comes despite the auditor-general having given the department an unqualified report.

Sadtu members even marched to the head office in Pietermaritzburg and submitted a memorandum with the allegations.

Mchunu said that by announcing the firm of auditors the department was sticking to the ANC's commitment not to tolerate corruption.

He said the department was committed to clean and corruption-free governance.

"We undertake this task with an open mind and commitment to a fair process. The auditing firms are expected to start with the process right away," Mchunu said.

"Initially all submissions on allegations will be taken and analysed and due contact with parties concerned will be made.

"Submissions of allegations will be made directly to the office of the auditing firms in Durban and Pietermaritzburg as from today up to Friday next week," Mchunu said.

Mchunu urged all those who wish to submit allegations to do so within the specified period.

"Such allegations should be accompanied by evidence and witnesses where such exist."

Mchunu said that by instituting forensic investigations, they were not bowing to Sadtu's pressure and demands.

No time frame has been set for the investigations, but that it will depend entirely on the volume of submissions brought forward.

"But we hope it would run for the shortest period of time," Mchunu promised.

He said those implicated would not be suspended pending the outcome of investigations.