breaking news

By Sipho Masombuka

Tasima, the consortium at the centre of the controversial multi-million-rand eNatis contract, is being accused of billing the Transport Department R12-million for work not done.

The consortium was awarded the R403-million contract for licensing administration in 2001. From 2007, the contract was renewed on a month-to-month basis.

Tasima is now locked in a court battle to get from the department R118-million in what it alleges are unpaid fees.

The Road Traffic Management Corporation is one of the respondents defending the court action.

In his affidavit, filed in February, which The Times has seen, the corporation's former CEO, Collins Letsoalo, said that some of the fees claimed by Tasima were in dispute.

This had resulted in him alleging fraud and corruption to the Hawks. The Hawks confirmed that Tasima was being investigated.

Hawks spokesman Captain Paul Ramaloko said: "The case has to do with eNatis . that the contract did not go through tender processes. We are investigating Tasima with regards to fraud and corruption."

Ramaloko would not go into details of the case, saying investigations were at "a delicate stage".

When Tasima asked in April 2010 for an extension of its eNatis contract it also proposed, "in light of the pending Fifa World Cup", to develop software for the department. But the software had already been developed by Mandate Strategy Roadmap and Delivery a month earlier.

"This complaint relates to a claim of R12-million that was invoiced by [Tasima] for the work that it did not do. The services in question were rendered by a company called MSRD [Mandate Strategy Roadmap and Delivery] and were completed by March 2010 ..." Letsoalo says in the affidavit.

Letsoalo, who was last week recalled from the Road Traffic Management Corporation to resume his work as the Transport Department's chief financial officer, also said that Tasima claimed R2 360 in travel expenses for one of its employees said to have travelled between 101km to 200km "when they had in fact travelled only for 10km! This cannot with respect be correct".

The Sunday Times has reported that Transport Minister Dipuo Peters wrote a letter dated July 30 2013 demanding that Letsoalo hand over R507-million in traffic fines and licence renewals collected since September last year which was being withheld.

According to the newspaper, correspondence showed that Peters wanted the money to pay Tasima.

Letsoalo has refused to hand over the money, saying doing so would be unlawful.

According to auditor-general Terence Nombembe's audit report on the use of consultants, R594.2-million had been paid to Tasima when the contract expired in May 2007. He noted that Tasima was paid for additional services that did not form part of the contract.