Auditor General Report Pushes for Action

Precious Lesupi

Minister of Employment and Labour, Thulas Nxesi has suspended the commissioner of the Unemplyment Insurance Fund (UIF) following an open investigation into the mismanagement of funds within the UIF.

An update on from the Auditor General (AG) report stated that R37 billion had been disbursed by the end of June in COVID-19 Ters benefits. Meanwhile, regular UIF payments amounting to R5.9 billion have gone out to over 1 million claimants. The department received an audit report from AG pointing to various gaps, risks and inadequate controls and verification processes that have resulted in illegal payments.

These payments include, among others, to recipients of other state grants, students receiving NSFAS payments, public servants, and even inmates, deceased persons and minors.

According to the report, there is also evidence of over payments (underpayments) as well as inflated claims. Thus far, the department has opened 38 court cases and laid charges against the perpetrators based on evidence from the AG’s findings. In light of this report, Minister Nxesi has taken to suspending the UIF Commissioner and the Director-General of the Department of Employment and Labour has suspended UIF Senior Management: the CFO, COO and the HEad of Supply Chain.

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