As Gauteng Premier I will establish a ‘Gauteng Scorpions’ to fight corruption
11 April 2019
I am here today because the Zondo commission should just be the beginning. While the commission is shining a light on widespread corruption in our country, South Africans pay the price of corruption in their communities that cost them hundreds of millions of rands. That is why I am here to announce that as Premier, I will empower a commission of inquiry of state capture for the province of Gauteng, so we can root out corruption at every level.
To lead this commission I would ensure that that it is led by members of the judiciary so that is not tied to any political party, industry or family in order to expose corruption wherever it exists. For Gauteng to prosper we must squash corruption in the legislature, in our cities and townships, our communities and informal townships.
Not only do I want them to expose corruption. That’s only the first step. I will also fight for prosecutions. Too many people are exposed for corruption in the press and by commissions, but they are never punished. They continue to live in their mansions, continue to fly 1st class to France for vacations, continue to reap the rewards of their misdeeds. Quick: How many people can you think of who is currently serving time in prison for corruption? How many people can you think of that should? How many people can you even think of who has paid back the money they stole?
Not only do we need to investigate corruption, but we also need an active and permanent crime and corruption busting unit the deals with corruption when it happens. Johannesburg Mayor, Herman Mashaba, has done this in the City of Johannesburg, and I will do so in Gauteng.
When I become Premier in mid-May, the clock starts ticking. I believe strongly in the potential of the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA), but by all accounts the criminal justice system has been decimated. I will use every resource at my disposal to give the NPA the tools that it needs to do its job. With those resources, if the NPA is not able to bring known corruption cases to trial within a reasonable time frame, (3-6 months), I will take independent action.
As I said earlier, the independent Gauteng commission of inquiry is the first step. The second step is that I will fight for the establishment of an independent Gauteng civil prosecuting authority. Our constitution allows for civil prosecutions, and if the NPA won’t do their job, there are constitutional provisions that allow the people of Gauteng to do the job that they aren’t.
I will call them the Gauteng Scorpions, and for those politicians and connected people out there living the high life on our money - I am here to tell you: I am Solly Msimanga, I’m coming after you, and you are going to pay.
Enough is enough. The DA Manifesto calls for 15 years of jail for people convicted of corruption. As Premier I intend to be the leader that puts the teeth behind the words. I will not rest until corruption is exposed, and the corrupt are punished.
South Africans are tired of waiting for the National Prosecuting Authority to bring cases to trial. Today, if a politician is caught with a suitcase full of cash that he or she cannot account for, nothing happens. If a family member of a politician who has a grocery store gets a tender to build a bridge, nothing happens.
Issued by Solly Msimanga, DA Gauteng Premier Candidate, 11 April 2019