Criminal Charges against PRASA CEO laid by DA

he DA is convinced that axed Passenger Rail Agency of SA (Prasa) chief executive Lucky Montana must face the courts following the release of the public protector’s report into allegations of maladministration. This prompted DA leader Mmusi Maimane to lay charges against Montana and other functionaries at Prasa in Cape Town.

“Having studied the report of the public protector, the Democratic Alliance is of the considered view, that there is a prima facie criminal case that needs to be investigated, to which Mr Montana must answer for in a court of law,” Maimane said in a statement after laying the charges of corruption. He said the charges were laid in terms of section four of the Prevention and Combating of Corrupt Activities Act. The act relates to public officers.

In Public Protector Thuli Madonsela’s report, entitled Derailed, she found evidence of widespread maladministration and impropriety in the awarding of tenders worth R2.8 billion at Prasa. Montana was widely implicated in the report. In 2012, the SA Transport and Allied Workers’ Union reported allegations of corruption and tender irregularities at Prasa to the public protector. Montana has said he will go to court to challenge Madonsela’s report. Madonsela said she was disappointed about Montana’s decision to challenge her findings in court. Madonsela said Montana wrote to her after she released her provisional report. He said he was happy with the report and undertook to comply with the findings and remedial action.

Maimane claimed that Montana used Prasa finances like it was his “personal piggy bank” and cancelled and rewarded tenders on a whim, which contravened laws and regulations. “Mr Montana therefore directly allowed and, in fact, facilitated maladministration, corruption, conflicts of interest and financial mismanagement on a large scale,” he said.

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