Cape Town - The government was cracking down on corrupt
activities by construction companies, President Jacob Zuma said in his State of
the Nation address on Thursday evening.
"The state has collected a substantial dossier of
information on improper conduct by large construction companies. This is now
the subject of formal processes of the competition commission and other law
enforcement authorities," Zuma said.
He vowed to act against corruption, tender fraud and price
fixing in the infrastructure programme.
The Infrastructure Development Bill has been published for
public comment, he said.
Construction firms including Wilson Bayly Holmes - Ovcon
[JSE:WBO], Stocks & Stocks civil engineering, Murray & Roberts Holdings
[JSE:MUR], Group Five [JSE:GBF], Concor, and Aveng [JSE:AEG] allegedly fixed
state and other contracts worth billions of rands.
The companies are said to have fixed projects such as the
FNB Stadium in Johannesburg, the Coega development project in the Eastern Cape,
Green Point soccer stadium in Cape Town, the Nelson Mandela Bridge in
Johannesburg, and the Gautrain.
Executives are reportedly cooperating with police in
exchange for immunity from prosecution.
Zuma said the infrastructure development programme had been
a "valuable source of learning for government". He added that the government had learnt to
"coordinate, integrate and focus on implementation".
Last year Zuma announced a multi-billion rand infrastructure
programme for South Africa that would be spent on roads, ports and railways.