R500 million worth of KZN government building contracts problematic

Johann Krog, MPP

DA KZN Spokesperson on Finance

The Democratic Alliance in KwaZulu-Natal has called on the provincial government to urgently tighten up on tender procedures after it was revealed that there are currently a massive R500 million worth of provincial government building contracts which are problematic, having been abandoned, shelved or delayed.

The information was disclosed as a result of a recent Finance portfolio committee resolution.

Reasons for the delays include poor workmanship, community protests, strike action, hold-up’s in the provision of bulk services and delays when it comes to municipalities signing contracts.   The contracts listed affect all provincial government departments.  In the vast majority of cases, delays and other problems will see projects including schools, health facilities and housing developments not being completed on time.

The DA believes that the magnitude of the problem again highlights the decline in infrastructure delivery in the province, as well as the ineffectiveness of the Public Works department in KwaZulu-Natal.  While the province’s “crack team” has performed well, we need to see the tender process tightened up.  It is a vicious circle – as the team deals with one problem, another appears as a result of tender procedure not being followed.

These ongoing delays are a major financial drain on the province’s resources.  These incomplete projects must receive attention and, wherever possible, be resurrected and completed.

The DA calls on KZN Finance MEC, Ina Cronje, to immediately instruct the provincial Treasury to take charge of all new tenders in an effort to curb non-delivery.  Those who are awarded tenders must be capable of doing the job.  Where contracts are awarded to emerging contractors it must be in partnership with more established partners.

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