DOCUMENTS

DPW spends another R39,7m on upgrading ministerial residences - Kenneth Mubu

DA MP says minister blatantly refusing to disclose what the total cost has been for the ‘Prestige Programme' since its inception in 2008

Public Works spends another R39.7 million on upgrades to Ministerial homes 

22 September 2014

reply to a DA Parliamentary question today has revealed that Public Works has approved another R39.7 million in upgrades to Ministerial mansions in Cape Town and Pretoria for the 2014/2015 financial year.  

The upgrades are part of Public Works' ‘Prestige Programme' to provide Ministers with luxurious homes in Cape Town and Pretoria. 

The 39.7 million budgeted for this year will be spread over 26 different homes, with R10 million being spent on ministerial homes in Cape Town and R29.7 million being spent on homes in Pretoria. 

Public Works refuses to disclose any details about the locations of the homes, the relevant Ministers and the details of the upgrades, having cited ‘security concerns' in the past.

This R39.7 million is in addition to the tens of millions the Department has already spent since 2009 on upgrading Ministerial homes. The SIU is currently investigating the R27.6 million upgrade of 7 homes in Pretoria and upgrades totalling an unknown amount to 17 homes in Cape Town.

This reply is cause for serious concern. 

The Minister blatantly refuses to disclose what the total cost has been for the ‘Prestige Programme' since its inception in 2008. We will resubmit the question to get this information.

The R39.7 million that is going to be spent on Ministerial homes for 2014/2015 is a disgusting display of greed by cabinet.

I will write to the SIU to suggest that these upgrades also be put under the microscope. 

Ministers are living it up in the lap of luxury, whilst ordinary South Africans struggle to get along. In the meantime, we are placated with promises of ‘belt-tightening' and ‘getting back to basics'.

We need to permanently end the culture of bling in cabinet and get down to the business of responsible and effective governance.

Text of the parliamentary reply:

NATIONAL ASSEMBLY

WRITTEN REPLY

QUESTION NUMBER: 787 [NW874E]

INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER: No. 6 of 2014

DATE OF PUBLICATION: 25 JULY 2014

DATE OF REPLY: 19 SEPTEMBER 2014

Mr K S Mubu (DA) asked the Minister of Public Works:

With reference to his reply to question 162 on 4 July 2014, and without revealing any names, addresses and locations, (a) what was the annual cost of maintenance and/or renovations undertaken for each official housing unit provided to Cabinet members during the period 1 April 2009 up to the latest date for which information is available and (b) what are the details of the planned maintenance and/or renovations for the 2014-15 financial year with regard to (i) description, (ii) budgeted costs and (iii) reasons for such maintenance and/or renovations?    NW874E

______________________________________________________________________

REPLY:

The Minister of Public Works

(a)  In respect of this question, the Honourable Member should note that the Department of Public Works (DPW) initiated an investigation, which was undertaken and is currently still being undertaken by the Special Investigating Unit (SIU) into maladministration, tender irregularities, price inflation and other irregularities in respect of certain State-owned houses in the Prestige Portfolio located in both Pretoria and Cape Town.

In Pretoria 7 houses were investigated for the period in question. The reasons for the investigation were tender irregularities in the appointment of consultants, inflation of bills of quantities and non-delivery corresponding to payment claims by contractors in terms of bills of quantities. The cost of the renovations and/or planned maintenance of these properties amounted to R27 674 924.96. The DPW Director of Prestige in the Pretoria Regional Office was charged and found guilty and charges have been laid against others involved in maladministration.

In Cape Town 17 houses are under investigation by the SIU in terms of proclamation 54/2014 gazetted on the 01 August 2014 (GG No. 10243). The investigation covers the period from 2008 up to the date of the gazette. The reasons for the investigation are possible tender irregularities in the appointment of service providers, inflation of bills of quantities and non-delivery relating to payment claims by contractors in terms of the bills of quantities. The investigation is currently underway.

(b)  The details of the planned maintenance and/or renovations for the 2014-15 financial year with regard to (i) description, (ii) budgeted costs and (iii) reasons for such maintenance and/or renovations are as follows:-

ITEM

(i) DESCRIPTION

(ii) BUDGETED COST

(iii)  REASONS FOR MAINTANANCE/  RENOVATIONS

PRETORIA AND CAPE TOWN

1

Refurbishment

R3,370,849.00

Due for refurbishment

2

Refurbishment

R949,351.00

Burnt house -  refurbishment required

3

Refurbishment

R15,334,525.00

Due for refurbishment

4

Refurbishment

R3,139,982.00

Due for refurbishment

5

Security measures

R780,000.00

No security measures

6

Refurbishment

R280,848.00

Due for refurbishment

7

Refurbishment

R922,941.00

Structural defects

8

Painting, paving, repair electrical installations & other minor works

R309,846.00

Minor works to make the house habitable

9

Refurbishment

R1,027,073.00

Due for upgrade

10

Refurbishment

R1,255,000.00

Due for upgrade

11

Refurbishment

R676,257.00

No guard house

12

Refurbishment

R592,567.00

Due for refurbishment

13

Refurbishment

R497,000.00

Due for refurbishment

14

Refurbishment

R583,000.00

Due for refurbishmen

15

Repair roof covering, external painting and replacement of carpets

R500,000.00

Leaking roof needs urgent attention

16

Kitchen and bathroom upgrade. Roof and floor coverings

R1,615,861.00

Leaking roof needs urgent attention and refurbishment of bathrooms

17

Refurbishment of kitchen, bathrooms, electricity and roof

R1,413,173.00

Leaking roof needs maintenance and refurbishment of bathrooms

18

Upgrading of entrance foyer, all bathrooms, kitchen and painting

R3,197,756.00

Complex has not been repaired over 20 years and the fabric, old sewer pipes and drainage need attention

19

Security upgrade: Boundary wall, electric fence, cameras and guard house

R448,000.00

No Security measures

20

Upgrade of kitchen, bathrooms, electricity and roof

R277,500.00

Roof, kitchen and bathrooms need attention

21

Repair roof covering, external painting and replacing carpets

R500,000.00

Leaking roof needs attention

22

Upgrade of kitchen, bathrooms, electricity and roof

R330,000.00

Old house which needs repairs and an upgrade

23

Kitchen and bathroom replacement, upgrade of paving surrounding the house

R486,541.00

Old house needs repairs and an upgrade

24

Security upgrade: Boundary wall, electric fence, Cameras and guard house

R448,000.00

No Security measures

25

Upgrade of kitchen, bathrooms and internal painting

R330,000.00

Old kitchen and bathroom require upgrade

26

Security upgrade: Boundary wall, electric fence, cameras and guard house

R448,000.00

No Security measure

Total

 R39,714,070.00

Therefore the budgeted amount for maintenance/renovations of the Prestige portfolio for the 2014/2015 financial year is: R39,714,070.00

Pretoria= R29,719,239.00

Cape Town = R9,994,831.00

END 

Statement issued by Kenneth Mubu MP, DA Shadow Minister of Public Works, September 22 2014

Click here to sign up to receive our free daily headline email newsletter