The City of Johannesburg has uncovered nearly 1 000 instances of fraud within the licensing department and more than 100 officials may be arrested as part of a mayoral crackdown.
According to a statement issued by Mayor Herman Mashaba on Tuesday, several officials were expected to be taken into custody.
“Through investigation, we have identified a total of 106 allegedly corrupt licensing centre officials who will be arrested in the coming days and face the full might of the law,” he said.
Each of the suspects would immediately be suspended, pending swift disciplinary processes by the City.
Mashaba said the investigation was headed by former Gauteng Hawks head Shadrack Sibiya.
“Through the investigation conducted by Mr Sibiya, we have determined that the problem is not limited to the City of Johannesburg. Between January 2008 and February 2016, these fraudulent transactions were valued at R 155 074 672,08 nationally.”
“Corruption is deplorable and steals from the poor. When I took office, I declared corruption public enemy number one. When I announced Shadrack Sibiya as the new Head of the City’s Internal Investigations, I promised to root out corruption in the City of Johannesburg an bring those responsible for its existence to book. I’m proud to say this administration is living up to that promise,” Mashaba added.
He said that officials had colluded with syndicates to illegally obtain drivers’ licences, licence discs and vehicle registrations.
“Licensing officials would then pocket cash that would have ordinarily been paid to the City and utilised for much needed service delivery,” he added.
“I would also like to thank the MMC for Public Safety, Councillor Michael Sun, for his role in ensuring the success of this investigation, despite facing resistance within council from members of the previous administration who denied the existence of any corruption.
“The days when corrupt officials would get a gentle slap on the wrist or be shifted to a different department are over. Those found guilty of corruption will be prosecuted and stolen money reclaimed,” Mashaba said.