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Special Investigating Unit on measures in place to ensure safety of Whitsleblowers, Witnesses and SIU Investigators

27 Aug 2021

Measures in place to ensure safety of Whitsleblowers, Witnesses and SIU Investigators

The Special Investigating Unit (SIU) has noted the public sentiments and concerns around witness protection following the murder of Chief Director: Financial Accounting in the Gauteng Department of Health, Ms Babita Deokaran. Once more, the SIU wishes to extend its heartfelt condolences to the Doekaran family, colleagues and friends for their loss.

The arrest of seven (7) suspects relating to the murder of Ms Deokaran by the South African Police Service (SAPS) is welcomed by the SIU and brings us closer to finding out the motive behind her murder.

As the SIU has already stated, Ms Babita was one of the more than 320 witnesses in the ongoing Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) tender corruption and procurement irregularities investigations in both the public and private sector. The SIU cannot, at this stage, link or associate the murder of Ms Doekaran with the ongoing PPE investigations. SIU will allow the SAPS to get to the bottom of this.

The murder of Ms Deokaran will not affect or compromise the ongoing PPE investigation in the Gauteng Department of Health. The SIU is committed to finalising all PPE tender corruption investigations, hold those responsible for procurement irregularities and corruption to account, and to recover any financial losses suffered by the State.

 

Like many South Africans, government and civil society, the SIU is concerned about the safety of whistleblowers, witnesses and SIU investigators.

The SIU has put measures in place to ensure safety of witnesses and whistleblowers. Furthermore, the SIU encourage witnesses to come forward and inform SIU investigators should they feel unsafe or should there be any threat to them so that steps can be taken to protect them including invoking the Witness Protection Program that Government has in place.

Internally, the SIU is assessing and considering further measures that will be put in place to secure the SIU investigators over and above the measures that are already in place with the SAPS.

The murder of Ms Deokaran should not deter South Africans and public servants from reporting allegations of corruption, malpractice, greed and maladministration in the affairs government departments, municipalities and State Owned Entities. It is through the reporting of procurement irregularities and corruption in the public sector that we can protect the public purse and ensure that public purse serves the interest of the public.

Fraud and corruption allegations may be reported via the following platforms:  siu@whistleblowing.co.za / Hotline: 0800 037 774

Enquiries:
Mr Kaizer Kganyago Special Investigating Unit
Tel: 012 843 0048
Cell: 082 306 8888
Email: kkganyago@siu.org.za

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