The Democratic Alliance (DA) has written to the acting Chief Executive Officer of the South African National Roads Agency (SANRAL) Lehlohonolo Memeza, demanding the reasons for the cancellation of road projects that were due to begin shortly in various locations including KwaZulu-Natal and the Eastern Cape.
These contracts were worth over R17 billion.
DA DEMANDS TO KNOW REASONS BEHIND CANCELLATION OF SANRAL CONTRACTS
The contracts were awarded to effect essential work on the Mtentu River Bridge (R3.4 billion), The EB Cloete N3 interchange in Durban (R4.3 billion), the N3 Ashburton interchange in Pietermaritzburg (R1.8 billion) and the R56 in Matatiele, amongst others.
A spokesperson for SANRAL defended the decision citing a ‘material irregularity’ in the tender process and a failure to implement a ‘board resolution’ from 2020.
The DA’s Tim Brauteseth said the cancellation decision created a crisis for the construction industry and the recovery of the South African economy.
Brauteseth said the tenders involved are instrumental to the survival of the construction industry and become a lost opportunity cost.
“Not only are local companies affected, but the international partners involved will now view any project in South Africa with great scepticism. SANRAL must urgently answer what is the material irregularity discovered at the 11th hour and why was it not detected in the bid evaluation and adjudication processes? What is the resolution of the SANRAL board that was not complied with that is so serious as to cause the cancellation of these contracts?”Tim Brauteseth
Brauteseth said until these reasons are revealed, uncertainty in the road construction industry will continue to the detriment of the infrastructure and credibility of South Africa.