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Statement on Recent Allegations Involving UIF Deal and Corruption Claims



FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE


PUBLIC INTEREST SA STATEMENT ON RECENT ALLEGATIONS INVOLVING UIF DEAL AND CORRUPTION CLAIMS


Johannesburg, South Africa, Sunday, 5 November 2023 – Public Interest SA is deeply concerned about the recent allegations made by Mthunzi Mdwaba, disgraced, axed chair of Productivity SA and CEO of Thuja Capital, regarding a reported attempt to secure a R500 million bribe from him in connection with a R5 billion deal with the Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF). These allegations, if substantiated, pose a serious threat to the principles of good governance and transparency that our society holds dear.


The claim that three unidentified ANC cabinet ministers sought a bribe to influence the UIF deal is both troubling and regrettable. These allegations raise questions about the integrity of our government and its commitment to fighting corruption. We believe that such allegations should be thoroughly investigated to uphold the rule of law and maintain public trust in the criminal justice system.


Bare denials by those implicated in egregious corruption, on the one hand, and claims of faceless, unnamed “middlemen”, on the other hand, do not reflect well on the protagosists.


It is our belief that individuals with knowledge of corruption should work with law enforcement agencies and allow due legal processes to uncover the truth. Transparency and accountability are paramount in combating corruption and building a just and fair society.


Meanwhile, Public Interest SA wishes to, once again, commend the UIF and the Department of Labour and Employment for their swift action in suspending the project and initiating an investigation. This demonstrates a commitment to protecting taxpayers' funds and ensuring responsible governance.


Furthermore, South Africans owe a debt of gratitude to the upright, courageous senior officials at the UIF and the department who pushed back and blew the whistle on Mdwaba’s alleged shady dealings in cahoots with apparently venal officials.


Our organisation has always been a staunch advocate for ethical governance, transparency, and justice. We call for a thorough, unbiased investigation into these allegations to ensure that the facts are revealed, and if wrongdoing is found, those responsible are held accountable for their actions. We implore on Mdwaba to lay a criminal complaint with the relevant authorities and to provide assistance to any subsequent investigations of his allegations.


We remain dedicated to our mission of promoting social justice and ethical citizenship, and we will closely monitor developments in this situation to ensure that justice prevails and the interests of the public are safeguarded.


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About Public Interest SA | https://www.publicinterest.org.za


Public Interest SA is an organization committed to promoting social justice, ethical citizenship, and good governance in South Africa. We work to ensure that the rights and interests of the public are protected, and that transparency and accountability are upheld in all sectors of society. Our mission is to make the world a better place by advocating for fairness, equity, and integrity in all aspects of public life.



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