Whistle­blower at risk

EKURHU­LENI: THREAT­EN­ING CALLS, SUS­PI­CIOUS IN­VI­TA­TIONS, STALK­ING

The Citizen (KZN) - - News - Brian Sokutu – bri­[email protected]­i­zen.co.za

Man’s been on a cru­sade to ex­pose al­leged graft by top metro staffer.

The man who blew the whis­tle on the City of Ekurhu­leni so­cial worker and se­nior staffer Pauline Ngakane, for al­leged in­volve­ment in du­bi­ous mul­ti­mil­lion-rand ten­ders, is liv­ing in fear af­ter sev­eral threats to his life.

Af­ter blow­ing the lid on the shady deals in­volv­ing Ngakane, which led to the metro sus­pend­ing her, SA Com­mu­nist Party ac­tivist Ndzipo Kalipa has re­ported to ANC big­wigs and the po­lice that he re­ceived threat­en­ing phone calls and “sus­pi­cious in­vi­ta­tions” which put his life in dan­ger.

Since last year, Kalipa has been on a cru­sade to ex­pose al­leged un­der­handed deal­ings in­volv­ing Ngakane and ques­tion­able service providers who have si­phoned mil­lions from the metro in ten­ders.

The awarded ten­ders in­cluded the ap­point­ment of “ac­cred­ited train­ing service providers” to train early child­hood de­vel­op­ment prac­ti­tion­ers from 1 July, 2017 un­til 30 June last year, which Kalipa de­scribed as “un­ac­cred­ited train­ing – a waste of tax­pay­ers’ money”.

Kalipa also lodged an of­fi­cial com­plaint with the Coun­cil for So­cial Service Pro­fes­sions for “un­eth­i­cal and cor­rupt be­hav­iour, in­volv­ing fraud­u­lent ten­ders”.

His de­ter­mi­na­tion to ex­pose graft at Ekurhu­leni has, how­ever, come at a price.

“My life has been in dan­ger be­cause some peo­ple are un­com­fort­able about me rais­ing is­sues re­gard­ing cor­rup­tion. I have been fol­lowed, re­ceived sev­eral threat­en­ing phone calls and in­vited to sus­pi­cious events.

“Last De­cem­ber, I alerted the ANC pro­vin­cial sec­re­tary Ja­cob Khawe about my ex­pe­ri­ence, lead­ing to the mat­ter be­ing raised with the for­mer po­lice MEC Siza­kele Malobane, for­mer po­lice pro­vin­cial com­mis­sioner Deliwe se Lange and Ma­jor-Gen­eral Prince Mokotedi of the Hawks. Buno po­lice pro­tec­tion was pro­vided,” said Kalipa.

Khawe con­firmed he had been in­formed by Kalipa about “threats to his life”.

“He (Kalipa) did in­di­cate this to me and we ar­ranged that he meet the po­lice MEC and in­tel­li­gence. I do not know what tran­spired af­ter that,” Khawe said.

En­quiries about who takes re­spon­si­bil­ity for the pro­tec­tion of wit­nesses and whistle­blow­ers, the po­lice and the jus­tice de­part­ments re­ferred The Cit­i­zen to the Na­tional Prose­cut­ing Au­thor­ity

(NPA).

NPA spokesper­son Bulelwa Makeke said: “We only have a pro­tec­tion service that caters for wit­nesses who ap­pear in court cases in­volv­ing NPA in­ves­ti­ga­tions.

“Whistle­blow­ers fall out­side this cat­e­gory. But in the case of Mr Kalipa, it is a mat­ter that we can con­sider on the ba­sis that he did not just ex­pose graft in the me­dia but he re­ported the mat­ter to the po­lice and the per­son in­volved has now been sus­pended.

“He would have to pro­vide us the de­tails, in­clud­ing the case num­ber.”

Mean­while, po­lice depart­ment spokesper­son Li­randzu Themba said the High Court in Pre­to­ria would soon hear Po­lice Min­is­ter Bheki Cele’s heads of ar­gu­ment against the find­ings of Public Pro­tec­tor Bu­sisiwe Mkhwe­bane that Cele’s depart­ment was com­pelled to of­fer pro­tec­tion to an­other whis­tle-blower, Thabiso Zulu.

Zulu, a friend of slain for­mer ANC Youth League sec­re­tary-gen­eral Sindiso Ma­gaqa, who has sur­vived a mur­der at­tempt, gave ev­i­dence at the Mo­er­ane Com­mis­sion of In­quiry in­ves­ti­gat­ing po­lit­i­cal kil­ligs in KwaZulu-Natal, about cor­rup­tion in the Umz­imkhulu local mu­nic­i­pal­ity and the mur­der of Ma­gaqa.

We ar­ranged that Kalipa meet the po­lice MEC

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