Kevin Malunga, the deputy public protector was addressing the National Anti-Corruption Symposium at Durban University of Technology earlier today when he remarked that he doesn’t take bribes because he’s paid well.
Speaking, the deputy public protector specified that corruption is not all about the government. “People should not be fooled, corruption is not just a government problem.”
To Malunga, the “tenderpreneurs and future ones…are part of the problem because they are the ones doing the bribing.” He warned that if someone came to him and asked for an investigation to be dropped, he will “add another charge to the sheet.
I am immune to bribes and…it’s because I get paid decently as a civil servant so there is no way someone can come to me and ask me to drop an investigation.
He disclosed that procurement in South Africa is choked with corrupt practices and estimated that “more than 60% of tenders currently are contaminated with some sort of influence that is untoward.
We have a situation where the country is literally having millions, if not billions of rands stolen from it through unsuitable procurement. People do false billing, double billing and inflation of prices or they just don’t do the work.”
According to Malunga, there’s a suburb in Limpopo nicknamed “Tender Park”, where tenderpreneurs bought homes; “ask them how they contributed to the economy, they won’t be able to tell you,” he noted and added that “people have decided that it is (their) turn to eat, we are not going to provide value for money and who cares what you think as long as we get paid.”
He described the behavior as earning “something for nothing” stating that it “has taken root on a very aggressive scale.”
Further more, he explained that corruption starts when “public servants are poorly paid and stay in crummy flea-infested hotels. Someone will come and pay for a better facility or supplement their salary… (and) corruption starts. The model that says civil servants must be remunerated is critical in the course to fight corruption…”
With that he revealed that they get most of their powerful information and anonymous complaints from state employees. “Our most important whistle-blowers are in the system,” Malunga disclosed.
Above all, he remarked that the public protector is not going to collapse when Thuli Madonsela’s term as public protector end in October, and dismissed the insinuations that the office is going to collapse and become corrupt as nonsense coming from “prophets of doom”.