PARLIAMENT CONCERNED AT SHUTDOWN OF SOUTH AFRICAN POLICE COMPUTER SYSTEM

CAPE TOWN– Parliament’s Standing Committee on Public Accounts (Scopa) is urgently seeking a meeting with the South African Police Service (SAPS) and the State Information and Technology Agency (SITA) following reports that certain computer systems at the SAPS have been shut down.

The SAPS and SITA managements have confirmed that certain computer systems have been shut down by the software company managing them, Forensic Data Analysts (FDA), amidst allegations of serious irregularities with the FDA contract. Both agencies stress, however, that policing work is continuing across the country.

National SAPS Spokesperson Brigadier Vishnoo Naidu said Thursday that contingency plans had been put in place after controversial businessman Keith Keating of FDA had threatened in an e-mail to withdraw the software if the police did not pay outstanding accounts.

Keating is at the centre of the corruption allegations against the former acting Police Commissioner Kgomotso Phalane.

The chairperson of the Standing Committee on Public Accounts, Themba Godi, said the committee had suggested that payment of the contracts be stopped as the legality of the contract was in question.

We are shocked and dismayed at the fact that a single company can shut down the criminal justice system in the country in the manner that FDA has threatened to do,” Godi said.

“This calls into question the kind of contract that has been entered into with this company. Whether the equipment is being rented from this company or has it been bought by the State, we in Scopa would want an engagement with the Police and SITA on this matter.”

Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK