Important steps taken to tackle state capture: Cyril Ramaphosa
President Cyril Ramaphosa believes several “important steps” have been taken to put a stop to state capture and corruption in the public sector.
Chief among these interventions, Ramaphosa wrote in his weekly newsletter, was the rebuilding of law enforcement agencies that were decimated during the state capture years.
Among agencies that had been strengthened, he said, are the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA), SA Revenue Service (Sars), SAPS and Special Investigating Unit (SIU).
Sweeping changes to the leadership of state-owned companies was among other key changes.
All the interventions would have been impossible without the revelations made at the state capture inquiry, said the president.
“Much of this work is ongoing. There are areas where progress has been far slower than we would have hoped and these are now receiving closer attention,” wrote Ramaphosa.
“The findings and recommendations of the [state capture] commission will undoubtedly strengthen these efforts. We expect that the commission will identify some of the systemic weaknesses that allowed state capture to take place.
“This will empower us to take further corrective measures. While we can say that the era of state capture is over, we have not defeated corruption.
“Fraud and corruption remains pervasive and deeply entrenched in both the public and private sectors. Although it may not be on the scale of state capture, such criminal activities cost our country greatly, weaken our institutions and deprive South Africans of many basic needs.”
Ramaphosa said his administration's commitment to fighting corruption was demonstrated by how it “acted swiftly” against the looting of funds allocated for Covid-19 personal protective equipment (PPE) last year.
“This is proof of our commitment to root out corruption. We tightened up Treasury regulations, established the fusion centre and gave the Special Investigating Unit a wide-ranging mandate to investigate all Covid-related corruption allegations.
“In a first for the country, we also published online the details of all Covid procurement contracts across all public entities.”