SIU: None of the service providers in R431m PPE contract were accredited

The Special Tribunal has reserved judgment in the SIU’s review application of the R431 million tender that was awarded for the cleaning of schools at inflated prices.

FILE: The unit’s investigation found that some service providers charged 27 times the going rate and wants the tender to be declared invalid and unlawful, so that they can recover the money. Picture: 123rf.com

JOHANNESBURG - The Special Investigating Unit (SIU) is concerned that none of the service providers contracted by the Gauteng Department of Education to sanitise and decontaminate schools were accredited to do the work.

The Special Tribunal has reserved judgment in the SIU’s review application of the R431 million tender that was awarded for the cleaning of schools at inflated prices.

The unit’s investigation found that some service providers charged 27 times the going rate and wants the tender to be declared invalid and unlawful, so that they can recover the money.

Acting on behalf of the SIU, Matthew Chaskalson said none of the service providers were registered on the Central Supplier Database (CSD) prior to being chosen to do the work at schools.

The CSD is where details for organisations and individuals who can provide goods and services to government are kept.

Chaskalson said the procurement process had gone horribly wrong: “We have gone through every CSD accreditation that there is in respect to all of the respondents and we can confirm that not even one of them were registered.”

John Peter, acting for some of the service providers, has argued that the procurement was ultimately the responsibility of government and making sure that registration on the CSD system was checked beforehand.

The service providers have also slammed the SIU, claiming it has failed to prove that the Gauteng Department of Education didn't get value for its money.