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Scopa calls for probe into De Lille's role in Beitbridge Border fence project

Scopa has been briefed by officials from national Treasury and the Special Investigating Unit.

FILE: Patricia De Lille. Picture: GCIS

CAPE TOWN – Parliament’s finance watchdog, the Standing Committee on Public Accounts (Scopa) wants National Treasury to investigate the role played by the Public Works and Infrastructure Minister when she issued a directive on the Beitbridge Border fence.

Scopa has been briefed by officials from National Treasury and the Special Investigating Unit (SIU).

Scopa was looking into the conditions set by Minister Patricia De Lille in the directive for the project to go ahead. It wants National Treasury to perform an in-depth investigation on De Lille’s involvement with the state accountant general.

A number of members of the committee from all parties raised serious concerns about De Lille’s involvement. This was despite an SIU investigation which recommended 14 senior officials face disciplinary action.

Committee member Mervyn Dirks said: “I want to recommend that national Treasury do a full investigation to look at, among other things, the directive by the minister.”

De Lille denied any wrongdoing, saying she would never avoid accountability.

“I do want to be held accountable. I will never run away from accountability.”

The committee has now requested a report from the department and would also go on an oversight visit to the Beitbridge fence.

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