The Democratic Alliance welcomes an agreement today by the Portfolio Committee on Trade and Industry for a Parliamentary Committee Inquiry, in terms of National Assembly Rule 227, 1 (c), into the Transnet acquisition of 1064 locomotives at a cost of R50 billion.
After two failed attempts at extracting answers from a clearly belligerent Transnet CEO, Siyabonga Gama, who appeared before the committee to answer for the many allegations that have dogged this program including:
• The involvement of the Gupta’s through associate Salem Essa’s Tequesta Group which received R5.3 billion in kickbacks from China South Rail
• The incredible revelations that there are no measures in place to validate local content provisions in each locomotive as well as no penalty clauses for failure to meet a 55%-60% target for local content
• The blanket refusal to provide me with the shareholders of original equipment manufacturers (OEM’s) and suppliers related to this contract
• What the relationship between Mr. Gama and Salem Essa is in relation to these contracts
• What effect the price inflation by the Gupta’s has had on the contract, with up to R10 million per locomotive added on
• Why Transnet has ignored government department instructions to adhere to local content and designation provisions without consequence
We know that State Owned Enterprises like Transnet have become ground zero for the Gupta’s to rob and loot South Africa of its resources. It simply cannot be that Transnet is allowed to get away with protecting one family at the expense of good governance and fighting corruption.
That’s why only a committee inquiry can finally get to the bottom of this mess and finally bring accountability to this incredible theatrical act which is costing South Africans billions.
The Democratic Alliance will fight hard to ensure that the veil of secrecy around these contracts is finally lifted and those that have stolen money are held accountable.
Issued by DA