Public works department admits to spending R65m on renovations

"The department has spent R65-million of its allocated budgets under its prestige portfolio effecting renovations and improvements to a number of state-owned houses in both Cape Town and Pretoria allocated to members of the executive," said spokesperson Mandisa Fatyela-Lindie on Monday.

"Approximately 27 properties were involved with varying degrees of scopes of work."

She said spending money on houses of ministers was within the department's "core function".

The Sunday Times reported over the weekend that Public Works Minister Thulas Nxesi admitted to spending R65-million on renovating ministers' houses in the 2011/12 financial year.

Nxesi made the admission in response to a parliamentary question on December 14.


The renovation bills reportedly included R15-million on a Cape Town house allocated to Rural Development Minister Gugile Nkwinti, R10.67-million to overhaul a house earmarked for use by Transport Deputy Minister Lydia Chikunga, and just under R5-million to upgrade a house for Agriculture Minister Tina Joemat-Pettersson.

Department's responsibilities
"It is important to note that it is not the responsibility of the individual ministers to decide on the scope of renovation of state properties.

"This task is solely the responsibility of the department of public works in line with its constitutional mandate," said Fatyela-Lindie.

She said the Nxesi had embarked on a number of corrective measures to deal with suppliers who inflated prices during projects done by the department.

These measures included the formation of a task team made up of engineers, architects and construction project management to investigate the prices and construction quality.

In line with these corrective measures, external service providers had been brought on board to promote compliance, eliminate corruption and improve efficiencies, she said. – Sapa

Subscribe to the M&G

These are unprecedented times, and the role of media to tell and record the story of South Africa as it develops is more important than ever.

The Mail & Guardian is a proud news publisher with roots stretching back 35 years, and we’ve survived right from day one thanks to the support of readers who value fiercely independent journalism that is beholden to no-one. To help us continue for another 35 future years with the same proud values, please consider taking out a subscription.

Sapa
Guest Author

Related stories

Three million jobs lost and hunger surging amid Covid-19 crisis — survey

Income shocks and the breakdowns in social protection schemes have had consequences for hunger and food insecurity in South Africa

Unemployment fund, CCMA face jobs bloodbath

State bodies shielding workers have been weakened by budget cuts and high demands

Labour minister paints four bleak scenarios for the UIF if layoffs go above 41%

The fund has been selling assets to make Temporary Employer/Employee Relief Scheme payouts

Possible lockdown retrenchments are already soaring

After just three months of lockdown, more than 100 000 workers could lose their jobs

Workers battle for UIF payouts

Snarl-ups at the Unemployment Insurance Fund and bosses not assisting employees worsens people’s suffering

Women farmworkers call for labour centres to be opened

Many womxn who live and work on farms have suffered immensely during the Covid-19 lockdown
Advertising

Vaccine trial results due in December

If successful, it will then have to be manufactured and distributed

White men still rule and earn more

Women and black people occupy only a few seats at the JSE table, the latest PwC report has found

ANC still at odds over how to tackle leaders facing...

The ANC’s top six has been mandated to work closely with its integrity committee to tackle claims of corruption against senior party members

The PPE scandal that the Treasury hasn’t touched

Many government officials have been talking tough about dealing with rampant corruption in PPE procurement but the majority won't even release names of who has benefited from the R10-billion spend
Advertising

press releases

Loading latest Press Releases…

The best local and international journalism

handpicked and in your inbox every weekday