Valeska Abreu
2 minute read
24 Aug 2015
3:29 pm

Prasa ‘derailed’, Montana in the spotlight – Madonsela

Valeska Abreu

Public Protector has found evidence of maladministration and other forms of improper conduct in her probe of Passenger Rail Agency South Africa (Prasa).

Thuli Madonsela. File picture: Gallo Images / Thapelo Maphakela)

In a 385 page report titled ‘Derailed’, Thuli Madonsela says the transactions investigated and related findings reveal a culture of systematic failure to company with the organisation’s Supply Chain Management Policy (SCM), particularly involving failure to plan for bulk procurement, or test the market appropriately for competitive pricing and to manage contracts which may have cost Prasa millions in avoidable expenditure and preventable disruption of services.

Madonsela said she investigated 37 complaints, which amount to more than R2.8 billion, but will today only make findings and recommendations on 30 of those.

The complaints were lodged by South African Transport and Allied Workers Union (SATAWU) in 2012 and later pursued by the National Transport Movement.

Allegations included maladministration, procurement irregularities, nepotism and victimization of whistle blowers.

Madonsela said it was important to note that during the investigation her team had immense difficulty as information had to be clawed out of Prasa management. A subpoena was also issued in this regard.

Madonsela found that the extension of Siyangena Technologies’ contract to more stations than were specified in the tender advertisement for the Doornfontein station, accordingly constitutes maladministration and improper conduct.

She said the conduct of group CEO at the time, Lucky Montana to appoint Ezra Ndwandwe as the Change Management Consultancy for the organstiaon, resulted in maladministration and improper conduct.

Madonsela found that Montana failed to take disciplinary action against five employees implicated in R8 million worth of EFT fraud.

She added that Montana’s termination of contacts of seven cleaning companies also constituted maladministration and abuse of power.

The public protector is yet to make findings on seven other recommendations including several another appointments of companies belonging to board members and if Montana improperly took a trip on the Blue Train to Cape Town with female companions and returned with an SAA flight amounting to R170 000.