The Portfolio Committee on Employment and Labour today received an update on the case of suspended officials of the Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF), accused of defrauding the department’s Temporary Employee/Employer Relief Scheme (TERS).
The officials were suspended following a report by the Auditor-General which discovered that about R170 million from the TERS fund meant for Covid-19 relief to workers was irregularly paid, and the matter was referred to the Special Investigative Unit (SIU) for a comprehensive investigation.
The committee heard from Minister Thulas Nxesi that the officials, who include the UIF commissioner, the chief directors responsible for operations and labour activation programme, as well as the director for supply remain on suspension pending the finalisation of an investigation by the SIU and a lifestyle audit.
Though the committee felt that that matter was taking long while the officials continue to get paid sitting at home, the Chairperson of the committee, Ms Lindelwa Dunjwa, emphasised that it was also important to allow the process to take its course and make sure everything is done by the book.
The committee resolved to continuously interact with the department and monitor the investigation to ensure the law was applied fairly.
Source: Government of South Africa