Heat on officials doing business with government

Task team to probe conflicts of interest, says finance MEC Mlungisi Mvoko

Finance MEC Mlungisi Mvoko. File picture
Finance MEC Mlungisi Mvoko. File picture
Image: Eugene Coetzee

Almost 1,300 Eastern Cape government officials are registered on the central supplier database and are doing business with the state.

Of these, about 77 have received 31 government orders for supplies totalling R2.9m.

Finance MEC Mlungisi Mvoko revealed this in his policy speech in Bhisho on Thursday.

Mvoko said the 1,290 state officials doing business with the government were a cause for concern, prompting the establishment of a task team.

The task team will help accounting officers institute disciplinary cases against officials who have not de-registered from the database.

Some of the cases had been referred to the Special Investigating Unit (SIU) for further investigation, he said.

The number of government officials registered on the database continues to increase.

“We note with concern the increasing number of government officials that are registered on the CSD [central supplier database] and are conducting business with the state,” Mvoko said, adding that plans were in place to monitor the conflict of interest.

“We are proposing that a task team be established led by the anti-corruption unit within the office of the premier, to assist accounting officers in instituting disciplinary processes against officials who have not de-registered themselves from the central supplier database.

“After numerous reminders have been issued to departments and officials concerned in dealing with this matter, such cases have been referred to the SIU for investigation.”

Mvoko also said:

● An invoice-tracking app will be launched in September;

● Some hospital linen will be procured from exempted micro enterprises in the industry; and

● From August 1, government departments such as rural development and agrarian reform, health, education and social development would use Magwa tea products for school nutrition and patient food.

Mvoko said the development of the invoice-tracking app was at an advanced stage.

“It will be piloted in the departments of health, provincial treasury and sports and recreation in the current financial year to assist suppliers to track the status of their payments.”

The app would help suppliers and departments to ensure due process was followed in the issuing of orders while also tracking orders optimally.

The provincial treasury will enforce premier Oscar Mabuyane’s instruction that all departments use Magwa tea.

“We will continue to identity commodities manufactured in the province and advise departments before they engage on procurement in order to enhance local procurement.

“This will be managed . . . to ensure economic growth and sustainable job creation in the province,” Mvoko said.