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Officials suspended as probe starts at communications Seta

2018-03-16 18:12

Heads are on the block at a sector education and training authority as an investigation is launched into a company connected to the Seta’s CEO that made millions from it.

The head of the sector education and training authority and three managers have been placed on probationary suspension, pending the outcome of the investigation.

Oupa Mopaki, CEO of the Media, Information and Communication Technologies Sector Education and Training Authority (MICT Seta) was suspended by the board on March 1.

His suspension follows an investigation that was conducted by City Press last year into how he allegedly failed to declare his interest into a company that made millions from the Seta.

Read: Seta board to probe CEO

Mopaki had allegedly been working with a director of Network Infraco to milk the Seta of millions of rands.

Sources claimed an email with his cellphone number had emerged, linking him to the company.

It had become key evidence in the investigation into allegations of a conflict of interest on Mopaki’s part.

Sources told City Press that Network Infraco should not have received payment directly from the Seta because it was a training services provider, not an employer.

The company was allegedly paid by the Seta for an unusually high number of students and interns it claimed to have trained.

At the time the board indicated that it would appoint an independent body to conduct the probe.

Without getting into details of the matter, MICT Seta spokesperson Xabiso Matshikiza said on Friday that Mopaki was placed on precautionary suspension pending an investigation into the allegations received from the Auditor-General Kimi Makwetu and Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane.

Matshikiza said three other managers had also been placed on precautionary suspension.

They are corporate services senior manager Naledi Sibandze, learning programmes senior manager Jabu Sibeko and learning programmes manager Ernest Nemugavhini.

Matshikiza said those suspended had immediately taken compulsory leave to make room for an investigation into the allegations.

“The suspension is not a presumption of guilt on any individual but is merely intended to provide the necessary space to properly deal with these allegations.

"The board has appointed Charlton Philiso as acting CEO to take over the running operations of the SETA with immediate effect,” she said.

MICT board chairperson Sipho Mjwara said: “The board and management team of the MICT SETA are committed to ensuring business continuity that reinforces leadership of the organisation.”

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October 13 2019