The Directorate on Corruption and Economic Crime (DCEC) says it is investigating 1,286 active cases involving different players in the economy.
DCEC director general, Tymon Katholo told the Parliamentary Committee on Governance and Oversight that of recent, 182 of the cases are with the Directorate of Public Prosecutions (DPP) while 116 are already before the courts.
He further told the Committee that 441 cases could not yield sufficient evidence to warrant prosecution.
Under actives investigations, 727 are related to alleged corrupt allocation of plots under Tawana Land board comprising 67 plots, 261 under Mogoditshane Sub-Land board, Kweneng Land board at 12, 40 under Kgatleng Land board while 337 are under Gaborone City Council.
“Currently there are 182 cases pending at the DPP. 86 of which cases have been pending from 0-5 years, 58 for 5-10 years, and 38 cases for 10-18 years,” the DCEC boss said.
Due to the slag in the turnaround to investigate and prosecute cases, Katholo said there is need to improve on the value chain in terms of disposal of cases. On reports relating to COVID-19 corruption, from April 2020 – May 2021 the committee learnt that the DCEC received 69 such matters. However, Katholo disclosed that under classification the cases were; two given advice, five for further reports, 27 for investigation stage, three for intelligence, 30 were referred to different Ministries and two confidential and referred to the office of Director General.
Still on COVID-19 corruption cases per Ministries, there were 27 allegations under investigation from 69 COVID-19 reported matters.
According to Katholo, the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development (MLGRD) is leading in COVID-19 corruption cases in councils with 15, followed by Ministry of Health and Wellness (MOHW) with three cases, Ministry for Presidential Affairs, Governance & Public Administration (MOPAPGA) two
On status of investigation cases, 16 are under investigation, one was forwarded to DPP, while nine are awaiting closure panel and there is only development in one case.
However, there are 30 COVID-19 corruption allegation reports classified as maladministration matters and referred to relevant Ministries for investigations.
BURS has recorded 10 maladministration matters, the Ministry for Employment, Labour Productivity and Skills Development (MELPSD) five, Ministry of Nationality, Immigration and Gender Affairs (MNIGA) one, MoBE eight, MoHW three, Ministry of Tertiary Education, Research, Science and Technology (MTERST) one and Botswana Police Service one case.
In another development, Katholo revealed that they have seven investigation teams countrywide manning the agency.
“The strategy assumes that there will be one prosecution case submitted to DPP each month by each team which will give a total of 84 cases per annum and 21 cases per quarter.
The intention is that of the 21 cases per quarter there should be at least three cases of national interest submitted,” he said.
On a different matter, the DCEC head said currently his corruption unit has a recurrent budget of P138, 038,570.00 and the development budget of P42.5 million for the 2021/22 financial year.
With this very limited budget, the director general bemoaned they are really constrained in their conduct of business as approximately 70% of the recurrent budget goes towards personnel emoluments.