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Media Statement

24 June 2015

RAL has terminated the services of eight engineering consultants as part of the Agency’s bid to curb irregular expenditure and improve internal control processes.

Roads Agency of Limpopo (RAL) has issued termination letters to eight engineering consulting companies who were appointed from 2006 under questionable circumstances.

The Agency promulgated a Turnaround Strategy in 2014, whereby the Board of RAL under the leadership of Mr Matome Ralebipi, Chairman, set in place internal control measures to root out corruption and eradicate irregular expenditure.

This is indicative of the Board’s commitment to ensure compliance with all procurement processes as set out in the Public Financial Management Act (PFMA), thereby improving internal governance policies and procedures. To this effect, independent auditors were hired to conduct a forensic investigation into the Auditor General’s findings of irregular and wasteful expenditure at the Agency to the tune of R 1.3 billion which occurred between 2010 to 2015.

Eight companies were identified as holding open-ended contracts that failed to meet the Agency’s necessary procurement criteria. These companies were requested to provide supporting documentation confirming their appointments and work completed against contractual obligations. These documents, as well as any alternative form of a prescribed agreement between them and RAL were not forthcoming.

RAL’s Board of Directors had no option but to immediately terminate the services provided by these consultants in order to bring a swift end to any accounts of irregular spending at the Agency.

We have advised these consultants that they will be paid the full amounts owed to them for work rendered on behalf of the Agency upon our receiving the necessary documentation.

It is therefore with disconcertion that I have been made aware that representatives from one of the consulting companies elected to illegally occupy the office of RAL CEO, Mr Maselaganye Petrus Matji, as an act of protest against the cessation of their services.

RAL is committed towards ensuring that all tenders awarded under the current Board and Executive team strictly adhere to the laws that govern the entity. This ensures that the procurement of services follows a fair and transparent process so that true economic development in Limpopo is assured.

We therefore condemn any attempts of intimidation against RAL employees who are carrying out their duties in providing an honest and meaningful service to the people of Limpopo. The matter as it stands has been reported to the appropriate authorities in the province, as we regard forceful occupation of any staff member’s office as illegal and criminal.