DA welcomes cancellation of Siyenza contract

By Andrew Louw, MPL, DA Provincial Leader:

The Democratic Alliance welcomes the cancellation of the Siyenza Group’s contract by Misa. It appears that the company had submitted fraudulent tax certificates in order to win its government contract to replace bucket toilets in the Northern Cape.

We want the company to be blacklisted and prevented from doing any business with government. If government is at all serious about combating corruption, it has to act against companies who fake their way into government contracts.

Contracts for the provision of basic services, like housing and sanitation, must only be awarded to capable, competent suppliers who can deliver on time and within budget.

The Siyenza Group was awarded a contract worth R119.228 million in February last year to replace 5 500 bucket toilets in the province.

The target has since been revised to only 3 000. The contract was set to expire at the end of this month.

We will follow up with written questions to establish how many toilets have been built. By March 2015, the company has received R55.8 million for work done in the Northern Cape.

We are very worried about the incredibly slow pace of the Bucket Eradication Programme in the province. In the 2013/14 financial year, only 530 buckets were eradicated. It cannot be that funds are not available. In February last year, the premier announced that R62 million was set aside for bucket eradication. Yet only R21.7 million was ultimately spent.

While only 530 buckets were eradicated, there is an estimated backlog of 5 350 buckets on informal sites and 15 210 on formal sites in the province. Clearly, the pace of the Bucket Eradication Programme needs to pick up.

The Democratic Alliance believes that the right of each person to adequate sanitation must be respected and promoted. Awarding contracts to companies who are dishonest will not help us to reach this goal.