Gauteng MEC for Education Panyaza Lesufi said he was shocked his department had spent about R430 million on decontamination, disinfection, deep cleaning and sanitization of schools and offices.
Reacting to a report compiled by the Head of Department and chief financial officer, Lesufi said law enforcement agencies and the Auditor General would investigate if there had been irregularities.
According to the report, it cost R270 000 for one primary school, R290 000 for a secondary school, R290 000 for a teachers’ centre, and R390 000 for a district office. The report also reveals the contract to sanitize, deep clean and decontaminate the schools was awarded to about 300 companies.
The cheapest contract was R250 000 while the highest was R55m and awarded to Mapheceka Construction & Projects cc. Some of the companies awarded contracts worth millions had only been in operation for a few months and didn’t even have websites.
One of the companies, Insimu Projects (Pty) Ltd, was paid R13.9m for providing 51 services. A Companies and Intellectual Property Commission (CIPC) search revealed the KwaZulu-Natal company was only established in September 2019.
Lesufi said he was consulting with relevant law enforcement agencies to investigate the process, including requesting the Auditor General to check and verify if there was value for money used. “I wish to reaffirm my commitment to leave no stone unturned on this including holding those who procured these services accountable” Lesufi said.
The Gauteng Department of Education provides education to 2 186 701 learners in public schools. These schools consist of public ordinary schools of which 1 396 are primary schools, 616 are secondary schools, 65 combined schools and 128 special schools, the report goes on to say