The Special Investigating Unit (SIU) has found sufficient evidence of financial irregularities at the SABC to initiate or join the broadcaster in civil litigation against its former chief operating officer, Hlaudi Motsoeneng.
In a briefing to the standing committee on public accounts (Scopa), the SIU cited the awarding of a success fee to Motsoeneng, as well as appointments and salary increases awarded by him. It has also found evidence that indicated irregularities in the awarding of contracts to eight suppliers.
The SIU said the investigation had produced evidence adequate for it to initiate or join civil litigation instituted in the name of the SIU and the SABC in 10 high court matters, to the value of just over R560 million.
“Court-ready evidence had been gathered and compiled in respect of 45 matters” according to a summary report of the meeting.
“This consisted of civil litigation that involved 10 matters, in some of which the SIU had made applications to join existing actions and applications, and the provision of evidence to the SABC to assist in defending one civil matter. To date there had been 11 criminal referrals and 24 disciplinary referrals.
“The SIU had initiated interventions such as a special tribunal, a memorandum of agreement (with the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA), and a regular follow-up and update on referred disciplinary actions that expedited progress.”
The SIU said that in the second phase, matters being investigated included The New Age, the SABC security tender, the irregular appointments of seven SABC officials, the irregular payment of bonuses to senior managers and the R31 million paid in bonuses to 3,124 staff.
Under irregular expenditure, a R5 million South African Revenue Service penalty, as well as the validity of a sample of tax clearance certificates, including conflicts of interest, were being investigated.
“As a result of the investigation conducted by the SIU, court-ready evidence had been gathered and compiled in respect of 45 matters.”
In relation to Motsoeneng’s “success fee”, the report indicated disciplinary and criminal referrals were being pursued.