The long-awaited Manase Report into corruption and maladministration in the eThekwini Municipality has finally been made public.
Today, Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (Cogta) MEC Nomusa Dube provided electronic copies of the report to members of the media, political parties and lobby groups who had requested access to the report in terms of the Promotion of Access to Information Act (PAIA).
The report was commissioned by Dube in response to widespread allegations of corruption in the city, including the use of emergency regulations to grant housing tenders to the tune of R500 million during the 2009/10 and 2010/11 financial years.
The investigation also probed irregularities in the metro police department and business transactions between serving councillors and the city.
Despite the report being presented to council last June, access has remained restricted, with Cogta arguing that the city needed to complete investigations and disciplinary procedures against councillors and staff.
Following the last refusal for the 7 000-page report to be made public, City Press lodged an application in terms of PAIA.
Dube’s spokesperson, Lennox Mabaso, said that the department would not be responsible for any legal action against the media or any party for resulting from the use of the report.
Mabaso said claims that the report was not being released to cover up wrongdoing of officials and councillors were not correct.
Several other media houses, the DA and AfriForum had also applied for and were given copies of the report after making PAIA applications.
Earlier, sections of the report implicating former city manager Mike Sutcliffe and his senior staff in maladministration had been made public by eThekwini city manager S’bu Sithole, sparking a defamation case of R10 million by Sutcliffe.
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