Cape Town – The Auditor-General, Kimi Makwetu, has been backed by Parliament on his work to investigate Covid-19 corruption following millions that have been lost.
Makwetu was briefing the standing committee on the auditor-general on Friday on his report on Covid-19 corruption when MPs came out and backed him.
He told the committee this was the first report and it had identified a number of flaws in procurement, and in some instances there was no paper trail for items procured.
Makwetu said they need to clamp down on corruption and ensure every cent was accounted for.
Committee chairperson Sakhumzi Somyo said they were concerned about what the auditor-general had uncovered.
“This calls on us as parliamentary committees that we have to be worried about,” said Somyo.
ANC MP Zola Mlenzana said they wanted Makwetu to prepare a legacy report, before he leaves office in November, on how the committee will need to move forward on this work.
Makwetu had said he would issue a second report in November.
IFP chief whip Narend Singh said the standing committee would need to help the auditor-general where it was necessary.
In his presentation Makwetu said they had found certain irregularities in some of the procurement processes.
He said the media reports on the wrongdoings that took place were a reflection of the findings.
“What you read in the headlines is predominantly our findings. We went first and spoke to the accounting officers that were going to be charged of spending that R145 billion to close those gaps so that they can prevent the risk from an external and internal environment,” said Makwetu.
He added that the accounting officers would have to pick up people who “wanted to help themselves” on the Covid-19 funds.
He said they had investigated the Unemployment Insurance Fund to establish if people who were paid were correct.
This week Minister of Employment and Labour Thulas Nxesi suspended top officials in the UIF over the abuse of the TERS fund.
Several people have been arrested in Pretoria for the alleged stealing of the funds after they were allegedly paid millions of rands.
Makwetu also told MPs they found some of the prices for personal protective equipment (PPE) were inflated.
He said in some instances departments ordered PPE after the start of the pandemic but no PPEs were delivered.
He said this pointed to some serious wrongdoing.