Durban – The Congress of South African Students (Cosas) and Black First Land First (BLF) have slammed the Financial Sector Conduct Authority (FSCA) over its early October raids of Sekunjalo offices in Cape Town, saying the move smacked of hypocrisy.
In different statements issued over the weekend, the student organisation and the pro-black party said that some companies had been accused of squandering billions of rand in public money but they had yet to be raided by the financial sector watchdog.
“As Cosas Eastern Cape, we have learnt with shock the disturbing news which shows the raiding of Sekunjalo offices by the FSCA.
“We view this move by FSCA as hypocrisy and knee-jerk. Steinhoff and Markus Jooste have never accounted for their sin of the missing billions that were stolen by the puppet of white monopoly capital, Markus Jooste.
“It would be favourable to see the raiding happening at Steinhoff. As Cosas Eastern Cape, we vow to stand 100% behind Dr Iqbal Survé as he represents black excellence,” said the organisation, which is in alliance with the ANC.
In a similar condemnation of the raid, BLF president, Andile Mngxitama, said the FSCA’s raid of the Senkunjalo offices was the most unfortunate development since 1994.
“There is little doubt that the apartheid-regime-like raid was nothing but a political attack on the independence of the media. It is clear that someone very high up in government doesn’t like the groundbreaking investigative journalism that has been produced by the Independent Group.
“The raid is nothing but an intimidation tactic. The nation knows now that the ANC elective conference was bought and an amount of R1billion was used in the process; these revelations are thanks to the Independent Media group owned by Senkunjalo,” he said.
Like Cosas, he asked why the FSCA had not raided the offices of Markus Jooste.
“BLF asks why the FSCA has not raided the offices of Markus Jooste, whose proven corruption has caused a more than R20billion loss of public money at the PIC?
“When is the FSCA raiding Steinhoff? Is it because Jooste belongs to the cabal that has been exposed as funders of the CR17 campaign?”
Outrage over the raids has come from several quarters.
The Public Servants’ Association (PSA), one of the largest public-sector unions in the country, previously slammed the raids saying it proved that the state regulatory body was being used to settle personal scores.
The union’s spokesperson, Ivan Fredericks, said they regarded the raid “as a demonstration of the sick hypocrisy by this institution, and it further fuels the perception that it is used to settle a personal vendetta in a political scuffle, while large corrupt corporates are left without any interrogation”.
At the time of the raid, Fredericks said they had noticed the same trend at the PIC Commission where Steinhoff was not even featured.
“The PSA noticed the same trend at the PIC Commission where Steinhoff (was) not even featured, despite glaring evidence of unprecedented accounting fraud. “In addition, many JSE-listed companies and implicated accounting firms are for some reason overlooked for their criminality in fraudulent activities,” he said.
In a statement after the raid, the FSCA said that the operation was conducted as part of an investigation into allegations of prohibited trading practices, in possible contravention of section 80 of the Financial Markets Act.
As a market conduct regulator, the FSCA is mandated in terms of the Financial Sector Regulation Act 9 of 2017 to investigate and, in appropriate instances, take enforcement action in cases of market abuse on the financial markets,” it said at the time.’