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She admitted that a service provider was paid, even though they had failed to finish the job.

The adviser who got R21m, for a half done job

One of the mysteries of the HATC and the Creative Cultural Hub is the appointment of a company for what the department refers to as the “transactional advisor” or at times also referred to as a “transaction advisor”.

During the sitting of the Mpumalanga provincial legislature in May this year, the MEC for culture, sport and recreation, Thandi Shongwe, admitted paying over R21 million to the advisor who did not finish their job.

“Further costs were incurred for professional fees for the transaction adviser who was appointed to facilitate the partnership procurement for the two projects. The mandate included the development of bankable feasibility studies which have to meet and comply to the requirement standards of national treasurer regulations, systems that governs private and public partnerships and submitted for approvals by national treasurer.

“Unfortunately, the transactional adviser was very slow to yield the results and therefore his contract which expired in January 2018 could not be extended,” said Shongwe on 24 April at the legislature.

The department failed to respond on why it paid so much money while the transaction advisor failed to accomplish their work.

It also failed to explain the steps it has taken to recover the money.

Who was the transaction adviser?

“The Department appointed Tsebolo Minerals whose contract expired on January 14, 2018 before he could obtain the necessary National Treasury approvals as stipulated on the PPP regulation 16 to the PFMA,” said departmental spokesperson, Sibongile Nkosi in response to a Ziwaphi enquiry.

What was his or her responsibility?

“Facilitate the documentation on the following feasibility study; procurement that reflect on each stage that must be processed and approved by National Treasury, included the final signing of an agreement with the preferred bidder.

What were the deliverables of the transaction adviser?

Review and update of the feasibility studies of the Cultural Hub as well as the High-Altitude Training Centre. Production of the Request for Qualification of the Cultural Hub.

At the time of publishing, the department had not indicated what the actual achievements of the transaction adviser were.

The department also failed to provide the contact details of the transaction advisor because the contact numbers available online do not work.

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