ANC squashes R82 million Mayibuye School construction inquiry to protect officials

Issued by Alan Fuchs MPL – DA Gauteng Shadow MEC for Infrastructure Development
04 Jul 2024 in Press Statements

The ANC-led Gauteng government has backtracked on its decision to hold a formal inquiry into the shoddy workmanship that took place at the Mayibuye Primary School in Tembisa.

This means that officials who are responsible for squandering taxpayers’ money will not be held to account.

This is despite receiving approval from the Speaker of the Gauteng Provincial Legislature (GPL) for the inquiry to be held. This is a clear indication that the government is undermining the institution that has a mandate to protect the interests of Gauteng residents.

The Public Protector report released recently found that various forms of maladministration, undue delays, and irregularities occurred during the construction of the Mayibuye Primary School. The school remained unused for 7 years.

Poor project management, planning, and collaboration by the Education and Infrastructure departments resulted in the school being built on a sewer line, as well as surrounding properties encroaching on the site. The resolution of these issues resulted in delays and additional costs that are prohibited by the Public Finance Management Act (PFMA).

The Public Protector’s report found that access to the site was granted 13 months after the contractor was appointed. This delay resulted in additional costs of more than R10 million.

The Public Protector has instructed the Gauteng Department of Infrastructure Development (GDID) to provide her office within 60 days from the date of receipt of the report with a project plan indicating how and when the completion of the remaining external civil works will be finalised.

Furthermore, the Public Protector has also referred the report to the Auditor General of South Africa.

GDID is known for not completing infrastructure projects on time and within budget. This is one of many projects that cost the taxpayers of Gauteng a premium because of wastage and inefficiency.

The DA reiterates its demand that GDID only appoint officials who are fit for purpose.