Law enforcement agencies are investigating a suspicious procurement of auto spare parts valued at approximately P5million.The auto spare parts were procured by the Central Transport Organization a few years ago, but were never used and were to be auctioned.
However, the auction sale has been halted to give way for an investigation into how they were procured, said Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Transport and Communications Ntebogang Mokone on Wednesday.
“I am aware that there are ongoing investigations by law enforcement agencies, but I can not say whether that is the reason why the auction sale was halted,” she responded to a question from Chairperson of the Public Accounts Committee, Dithapelo Keorapetse.
The revelation came after Mokone said that her ministry has registered 263 garages and 46 dealerships to maintain government vehicles.
“Today CTO has accredited 263 garages and 46 dealerships to assist in maintenance of government vehicles, 18 private garages have been submitted for delisting due to various instances of non-compliance with accreditation standards. Evaluation of 39 garages who have applied is still ongoing,” she said.
Mokone lamented corruption in procurement of goods and services in her ministry and the entire government saying in some instances many projects had to be delayed because of litigation connected to procurement.
Meanwhile, the officer said that although maintenance of government vehicles has been outsourced to the private sector, CTO still carries out such work on special requests from ministries.
The MPs resolved to take a tour of the facility where the spare parts are kept or stockpiled.
Some of the items that were bought include fan belts, shock absorbers, and headlamps.
In a separate sitting, the Director General of Intelligence and Security Fana Magosi reiterated Mokone’s lamentations on corruption saying there are plenty of gaps that senior officials below PS level are exploiting to enrich themselves.
“Government is losing millions, and millions of Pula, a lot needs to be done to fill the gap and loopholes that exist in the system. There is a lot that is happening that Permanent Secretaries are not aware of”.