Hawks arrest 9 suspects for fraud, corruption relating to NMB bus project

The suspects allegedly ran a syndicate to unlawfully circumvent procurement processes.

FILE: A Hawks vehicle. Picture: SAPS.

CAPE TOWN - Nine suspects, including two former Nelson Mandela Bay municipal officials, have been arrested on charges of fraud, corruption and money laundering.

They will appear in court later on Friday.

The Hawks said that the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality was among those selected for a public bus service in 2010. The integrated public transport system project was administered with funding allocated by the National Treasury.

In that same year, another project was undertaken.

Authorities said that the service providers chosen for these two projects were irregularly hired and prices were inflated.

The matter was reported to the Hawks more than two years ago following an audit by the Treasury between 2014 and 2017.

The suspects allegedly ran a syndicate to unlawfully circumvent procurement processes.

It is further alleged that influential office bearers colluded with municipal officials and controlled decision-making in the appointment of specific people to important municipal posts.

This according to the Hawks was done to influence procurement processes.

The alleged objective was to ensure a steady stream of unlawful payments from the municipality to members of the syndicate.

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