Public works gets back R3.5m as high court throws out rental agreement

DURBAN, South Africa – The public works department will be refunded more than R3.5m after a high court ruling ordered that the owner of a building the department leased had fraudulently submitted tax documents.

The Special Investigating Unit (SIU) launched an investigation into procurement of leases by public works on behalf of organs.

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In one of those cases, public works entered into a lease agreement with Durban-based Easy Does IT Investments. The litigation was started after the company “submitted a false tax clearance certificate to public works when the landlord tendered for the lease”.

SIU spokesman Kaizer Kganyago said the Durban high court ruled that the lease should be set aside.

“The court found the lease to be invalid. In addition, the high court ordered the landlord to repay all rentals received amounting to R3,544,663 in terms of the lease. The landlord was also ordered to pay the SIU’s legal costs,” he said.

The SIU described the decision as “yet another victory by the SIU against fraud and corruption”.

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