Opposition parties in KwaZulu-Natal have slammed the decision by the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) to not prosecute officials implicated in the KZN Department of Social Development’s blanket saga.
In July 2020 KZN DSD officials were implicated in the R22 million saga. A forensic investigation revealed that thousands of blankets that cost the provincial government more than R15 Million had been lying in a storage unit, damaged and unused for months.
NPA WON’T BE PROSECUTING KZN DSD OFFICIALS
The investigation also revealed that 48 000 blankets were ordered and paid for in full but only 4982 blankets were distributed (as at May 2020).
More than 43018 blankets were left in storage centres with uncontrolled access.
The Special Investigating Unit (SIU) has recommended that internal and criminal charges be laid against those officials involved. The NPA on the other hand says there is insufficient evidence to follow through.
The DA in KZN said it is sad that the money which was destined for the most vulnerable members of society was taken from them by officials.
“It is sad that an investigation which has produced proof of wrongdoing – and which recommends criminal charges – has been set aside. This is a clear case of political interference dictating innocence or guilt.
“What the NPA, the Premier and his MEC are effectively saying is that if you work for the government you are above the law.”
The Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP) in KZN said the NPA rescind this decision and pursue this matter, without fear or favour.
“KZN Premier, Sihle Zikalala, was quick to institute a forensic investigation. The Premier must show that he was serious in his commitment to clean governance and to rooting out corruption in his administration. He must step up and insist that those senior officials face the full might of the law.”
IFP KZN Provincial spokesperson for Social Development, Les Govender