PRASA supports SIU probe into corruption allegations

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The Passenger Rail Agency (PRASA) expressed approval of President Cyril Ramaphosa’s decision to grant the Special Investigating Unit (SIU) authority to investigate corruption at the state entity.

The PRASA-Proclamation 153 of 2024 signed by the president empowers the SIU to probe corruption allegations related to maladministration and the awarding of tenders for the supply of trains, as well as improper and unlawful conduct by any PRASA employees.

In a statement, the passenger rail agency said: “PRASA’s Board of Control believes that the investigations will further enhance clean and effective governance within the entity and eradicate corruption within the organisation.

It says, “The Board believes that a great deal of progress has been made in eradicating corruption within the entity and promoting behaviour that is professional and lawful.”

Deputy General Secretary of the United National Transport Union (UNTU), Dan Khumalo, welcomed the investigations and expressed the hope that they would lead to the recovery of lost funds.

Khumalo says, “A lot of money was lost, we are talking billions and as a result, we can see that impact on Prasa’s turnaround strategy.”

“I mean there are a lot of things that need to be in place, but they can’t actually because of money because they allowed things to happen hence we are saying the government is reacting where they have to act swiftly.”

Ramaphosa also gave the SIU the go-ahead to investigate allegations of maladministration in the issuing of visas and other official documents by the Department of Home Affairs. According to the proclamation, the SIU will also investigate allegations of “improper conduct” by some officials in the departments.

SIU spokesperson, Kaizer Kganyago says, “We’re going to be looking at all kinds of visas that were issued during that time, from 2004 until now. Be it study visas, be it where people are converted or naturalised, all of those transactions we are going to look at and make sure that all of them were following the prescripts, were following the law and everything else. You’ll remember that time there was a lot of movement in and out of the country, therefore that is what we are going to be looking at. And the second thing we’re going to be looking at is the firewall that they procured.”