Discrediting Eskom investigators fosters corruption

Issued by Benedicta van Minnen MP – DA Member on the Standing Committee on Public Accounts
01 Jun 2023 in News

Note to editors: Please find attached soundbite by Benedicta van Minnen MP.

South Africans have been watching with grave concern as revelations from the Standing Committee on Public Accounts (SCOPA) hearings unfold, illustrating a disconcerting inclination to silence those brave enough to raise the alarm.

The emergence of corruption and gangsterism within our state structures has escalated to such an extent that we now spurn assistance from investigators probing serious allegations. These allegations pose severe threats to South Africa’s security, especially in the context of our critical energy sector, including our primary power supplier, Eskom.

Instead of recognizing the valuable contributions of George Fivaz Forensic & Risk (GFFR), who have, driven by concern for the welfare of South Africans, dedicated their efforts to shedding light on the corrupt and nefarious activities within Eskom and the wider energy sector, we see a disconcerting spectacle unfolding. This involves a concerning pattern of deflection and an unwarranted assault on the integrity of these dedicated professionals. These are investigations privately funded, marking an immense level of commitment to the cause, which makes the prevailing response even more disheartening.

Disturbingly, the focus has shifted from the substance of the investigation to form, from the pivotal content to superficial aspects. GFFR’s report, financed out of concern by private entities, was communicated with law enforcement agencies. Yet, the response has been to overlook these crucial findings while those implicated rush to absolve themselves of any responsibility. It seems that the narrative of avoiding accountability persists within our state machinery.

Such an approach resembles trying to treat a malignant tumour with a band-aid. It is not just unproductive, but hazardous to the well-being of South Africans. It is akin to undermining the foundation of a house while fussing over the colour of the front door. South Africans deserve better, and the Democratic Alliance (DA) is unwavering in its commitment to ensure they receive it.

Over the next two weeks, SCOPA will continue its engagement with the relevant stakeholders. The DA is resolute in maintaining pressure on the government to hold those accountable who perpetuate these damaging practices.

This is not a quest for vengeance, but a call for justice, a restoration of the rule of law, and a transformation of our approach. We need to stop penalising those that possess the courage and integrity to expose corruption.

Our country can ill afford to shoot the messenger while those causing havoc roam free. South African citizens deserve better, and it is the mission of the DA to ensure this is achieved.

Be part of the mission to rescue South Africa, register correctly to vote now at check.da.org.za