Cor­rec­tional re­cruits or­dered to pay E3m for food, uni­form

…Some money is for Green Mamba t-shirt to be com­pul­so­rily worn dur­ing team’s of­fi­cial soc­cer matches at sta­di­ums and mys­te­ri­ous trans­port money to th­ese games

Observer on Saturday - - News - Sto­ries by Bodwa Mbingo

Re­cruits cur­rently un­der­go­ing train­ing un­der His Majesty’s Cor­rec­tional Ser­vices (HMCS) were this week or­dered to fork out over E3 mil­lion by their su­pe­ri­ors at the Mat­sapha Cor­rec­tional Col­lege.

Hav­ing been train­ing at the col­lege for close to three months now they got paid like all civil ser­vants this month and for them this was their first pay un­der gov­ern­ment’s pay­roll.

They were there­fore briefly re­leased from the train­ing last Wed­nes­day morn­ing and de­pend­ing on whether they were able to con­clude the with­drawal, fur­ther on that Thurs­day morn­ing to visit their var­i­ous banks to each get about E8 700, which was to be paid in full to their su­pe­ri­ors at the col­lege.


In­sid­ers at the col­lege re­vealed to the Ob­server on Satur­day that each of the re­cruits was given about three hours for the ex­er­cise since they could not just with­draw over E8 000 from ATMs, but had to go in­side to the banks’ tell­ers for the trans­ac­tions hence the banks’ queues were longer on the two days as a re­sult of that.

This pub­li­ca­tion can re­veal that the money col­lected, the re­cruits were told, will go to­wards pay­ing for their meals that are pro­vided by Mat­sapha based cater­ing com­pany Fedics Food Ser­vices with each hav­ing forked out a to­tal of E6 000.

That means E3 500 is for the three months al­ready ex­hausted at the col­lege and E1 500 is for Novem­ber as they are made to pay for the meals a month in ad­vance. It can be fur­ther re­ported that E2 400 from each will go to­wards the re­cruits’ uni­form while still at train­ing while about E300 from each will go to­wards pur­chas­ing the Cor­rec­tional Ser­vices’ soc­cer team Green Mamba’s Um­bro t-shirt that should be com­pul­so­rily worn dur­ing the team’s of­fi­cial games.

More of the money, the re­cruits have been al­legedly told, will go to­wards trans­port money to th­ese games, but sur­pris­ingly they are fer­ried on Cor­rec­tional Ser­vices trucks that are gov­ern­ment owned and are fu­eled by gov­ern­ment.

The col­lege is cur­rently hous­ing about 350 re­cruits that are ex­pected to par­tic­i­pate in their pass-out pa­rade that is ex­pected to be graced by His Majesty King Mswati III at a date to be re­vealed next year.

It has been gath­ered that food alone, the Cor­rec­tional Ser­vices has col­lected about E2 100 000 from the re­cruits and a fur­ther E840 000 for the uni­form. The Ob­server on Satur­day can re­veal that in the next un­con­firmed months, E1 500 will con­tinue to be col­lected from the re­cruits as con­tri­bu­tions to­wards their meals. It should be noted that Fedics Food Ser­vices has been en­gaged by the depart­ment to pre­pare food for the re­cruits.


Another sit­u­a­tion has been con­sid­ered, which is that of the po­lice re­cruits also based in Mat­sapha, who ac­cord­ing to our sources are called upon to pay only E700 a month for food.

What is of main con­cern es­pe­cially to the re­cruits that have been made aware of the sit­u­a­tion is that the re­cruits are ex­pected to make their con­tri­bu­tions in cash only and no re­ceipt is in turn is­sued to them.

The mind­bog­gling ques­tion there­fore is: “Where does the col­lected money go to be­cause it def­i­nitely does not go to gov­ern­ment cof­fers as the man­ner of the pay­ment does not re­flect so.”

Cor­rec­tional Ser­vices Pub­lic Re­la­tions Of­fi­cer (PRO) Gugulethu Dlamini said there was noth­ing sin­is­ter about the pay­ment of E1 500 for the meals as the re­cruits are the ones en­joy­ing the meals. She said all the Cor­rec­tional Ser­vices was do­ing was to col­lect the money on be­half of the cater­ing com­pany.

“The food is not pro­vided by the Cor­rec­tional Ser­vices, but an in­de­pen­dent com­pany and it is this com­pany that charged the fig­ure.

What is also im­por­tant is that the re­cruits are the ones that chose the menu and it was not shoved down their throats. They could have cho­sen a menu that is cheaper than this one, but it was their pref­er­ence.

What is hap­pen­ing now is that there was an ar­range­ment that the cater­ers pro­vide the food on credit for the first months they are in train­ing and they are now pay­ing that back,” she stated.

DIS­TANCES HIM­SELF: Pub­lic Ser­vice Prin­ci­pal Sec­re­tary (PS) Evart Mad­lopha.

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