Strengthening the criminal justice system to recover stolen public funds is one of the measures government is taking to fight corruption.
Minister in the presidency, Jackson Mthembu, highlighted this during a recent debate in the national assembly on anti-corruption.
The minister indicated that government is encouraged that “measures to ensure a zero tolerance to corruption are beginning to be effective and impactful” and cabinet remains focused to ensure that the measures succeed.
In terms of recovering stolen public funds, the minister pointed out that there are 179 cases under investigation with 6 cases involving 19 accused already in court.
“There are 64 bank accounts that have been frozen and an estimated R100 million in the process of being recovered by various agents including the asset forfeiture unit, SARS and SIU.”
Other measures to be implemented include acting against private companies, financial services and agents that facilitate tax avoidance and illicit financial flows, profit shifting, illegal imports and import fraud that undermines tax revenue; undertaking lifestyle audits and vetting as well as financial monitoring to reduce corruption; enforcing compliance with Section 8 of the Public Administration Management Act as well as Regulation 13 (c) of the 2016 Public Service Regulations to prohibit public servants doing business with government; developing systems to ensure a more transparent and more open tender system as mitigation against fraud, bribery and corruption and build and strengthen the social compact on anti-corruption that will include initiatives to discourage those that turn a blind-eye to corruption.
The minister emphasized that the “path the ANC has taken of cleansing the Public Service, the Private Sector and Society of corruption and corrupt elements, is an irreversible path that must create more opportunity to focus on the socio-economic reconstruction and economic recovery agenda”.