Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba must immediately hand over the findings of forensic investigations conducted into Deputy Finance Minister Sfiso Buthelezi when he was chairperson of the Passenger Rail Agency of SA (Prasa) board to the Hawks as supplementary evidence into their ongoing investigations into Prasa, the Democratic Alliance (DA) said on Sunday.
Media reports on Sunday claimed that the findings of the forensic investigations – dating back as far as 2010 – revealed how Buthelezi, the Prasa board, and Prasa executives violated various sections of the Public Finance Management Act (PFMA) and failed to carry out their fiduciary duties when they turned a blind eye to irregular, fruitless, and wasteful expenditure in various tender procurement processes, DA spokesperson Manny de Freitas said.
These investigations were commissioned by the National Treasury following recommendations in the public protector’s “Derailed” report.
Findings from these probes had apparently been handed over to Treasury recently, which meant that Gigaba and ironically, his implicated deputy, would now have to deal with these findings, he said.
The DA would ask Gigaba to urgently hand the full dossier on Buthelezi over to the Hawks.
The DA would not allow him “to sweep these damning allegations under [the] rug”.
“It is clear that both the finance minister and his deputy have been placed in their positions to promote the Guptas’ interests, but we will not allow the ANC’s captured Gupta-ministers to protect one another,” De Freitas said.
The DA had already written to parliament’s transport portfolio committee chairperson Dikeledi Magadzi to request that the Hawks be summoned to parliament to give an up to date report on progress in their ongoing investigations into Prasa.
Last week, the DA laid criminal charges against Buthelezi as it appeared he might have been involved in corrupt activities at Prasa.
As a minister in charge of such an important portfolio he should be beyond reproach.
“Sadly this is not the case. The DA will ensure that any minister or public official that have been implicated in state capture are investigated to the fullest extent of the law,” De Freitas said.