South Africa: Standing Committee on Public Accounts Shocked at Forensic Data Analysts Holding Country to Ransom
Scopa is scheduled to meet with South African Police Service to clarify matters relating to various contracts including the Forensic Data Analysts contract
The Standing Committee on Public Accounts (Scopa) is shocked and disappointed with the fact that one man can hold the whole country to ransom by having the power to switch off the criminal justice system. This raises the question of whether the South African Police Service (SAPS) is renting this equipment from Forensic Data Analysts (FDA) or owns it because from what the committee understands FDA is said to be handling the maintenance of this system only. Therefore, it is really puzzling as to why one man can have such power over equipment that is owned by the government. If this equipment has been bought by the government, what gives FDA the right to switch it off?
Scopa is also wondering what kind of contracts were entered into with FDA because this arrangement is a betrayal of the national interest. The committee believes that this matter should be attended to expeditiously if SAPS and government are serious about national security.
Secondly, the call Scopa made not to continue with the payments of the contract arose from the fact that the officials themselves were questioning the legality of the contracts. Scopa then said if there is illegality, the officials should not pay. Scopa did not just make the call in a vacuum, the call was informed by the concerns from the officials.
Scopa is scheduled to meet with SAPS to clarify matters relating to various contracts including the FDA contract. Scopa is going to prioritise the meeting with SAPS in the light of these shenanigans by FDA.
Distributed by APO Group on behalf of Republic of South Africa: The Parliament.