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Anti-Corruption Bureau finds corruption in K236 billion files

The Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) has said the review of 54 files in K236 billion Cashgate has found some cases related to corruption.

The files in question are the ones that the office of the Auditor General submitted to ACB on top of the 13 files submitted earlier.

The forensic audit covering the period between 2009 and 2014 failed to account for K236 billion, raising fears of more wanton looting of government coffers in the public service ACB Director General, Reyneck Matemba, said there is progress in the review of the 54 files and 17 of the files have been cleared.

“With that clearance, the figure K236 billion has gone down. We continue reviewing the other remaining files. So far, there are a number of files that, already, we have made a decision to investigate and prosecute.

“We did a review and, from that review, we are already embarking on full investigation and if evidence is found, which is most likely, in those other files, we will prosecute,” Matemba said.

On the K24 billion Cashgate of 2012/23, Matemba said there has been progress in the prosecution of cases related to that plunder of public funds, with investigations on almost 96 percent of the cases completed

The investigations related to cases whose accused people are suspected to have foreign accounts, which continue to be a difficult task for the bureau.

But, according to Matemba, there is a budget for foreign investigations in the 2018/19 budget and South Africa is the number one target.

“We are also working with other law enforcement agencies in South Africa where we think, if we are able to work with them, we are going to reduce the amount that we are going to use when we want to go out and do investigations. We are also approaching our cooperating partners to help us fund foreign investigations,” he said.

Matemba then said the accusations that the bureau targets sympathisers of opposition political parties and spare members of the ruling Democratic Progressive Party are not based on any truth.

“In fact, if you look at the files that we have in the bureau relating to politicians, the majority of the cases that we are prosecuting are involving members of the Democratic Progressive Party. I am highlighting this issue deliberately. We don’t take instructions from anybody.

“As a bureau, we want to be professional and not be seen to be siding with a certain political party. We do our work independently and we will continue to do that. We don’t side with anybody, including the government,” Matemba said.

He added that ACB is working on regaining people’s confidence in it.

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