World Cup Corruption: Justice Minister should reveal details of two “officials”
In a reply to a DA parliamentary question, it has been revealed that the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) of the United States of America (USA) has given the South African government its charge sheet into the $10 million FIFA scandal that rocked the international sports community and implicated members of South Africa’s Local Organising Committee (LOC) earlier this year. Specifically, reports allege that the charge sheet contains the names of two South African officials who have been implicated in this scandal.
As such I will be writing to the Justice Minister, Mike Masutha, requesting he make public the charge sheet and other related documents and confirm whether the two officials fingered in the scandal are part time Mayor of Nelson Mandela Bay, Mr Danny Jordaan and former President of SAFA, Mr Molefi Oliphant.
Further to this, the DA will also be submitting parliamentary questions to get clarity on the progress made with the criminal investigation initiated by the DA in September this year.
While we welcome the fact that the South African government has been collaborating with US law enforcement, Minister Masutha’s answer to the DA’s parliamentary question is vague and void of detail. His response does not confirm which two South Africans are going to be formally charged for their involvement in this scandal that has unfortunately blemished the FIFA 2010 Soccer World Cup that all South Africans held in such high esteem.
The indictment of Jack Warner, former Vice President of FIFA, revealed that at least two South African officials were central to the 2010 World Cup bribery. The two individuals have not yet been named but have been described as high ranking members of the 2010 Bid Committee and the Local Organising Committee.
However, we know that both Jordaan and Oliphant are implicated in the decision to transfer the money for CONCACAF’s Diaspora Legacy Programme in two letters. A letter, written and signed by Jordaan in his capacity the CEO of the Bid Committee in December 2007, shows that he instructed FIFA to authorise the $10 million payment to CONCACAF. A second letter from Oliphant to FIFA in March 2008 shows the he too instructed the payment of the $10 million.
To this end the DA laid charges against Jordaan and Oliphant, which include fraud as well as corruption under Section 3 of the Prevention and Combating of Corrupt Activities Act, 2004.
We have asserted that in the interests of justice the South African government shouldn't have to wait for a foreign government, including the U.S, to investigate allegations of bribery against two South Africans identified in the US Attorney General's indictment and now allegedly in the FBI’s charge sheet.
It must be noted that the 2010 FIFA World Cup will remain one of South Africa’s shining achievements but it is vitally important to hold those allegedly guilty of corruption to account and that a clear message is sent to those who seek to tarnish South Africa though corrupt activities, that they will not be allowed to get away with it.
The fact of the matter is that corruption steals opportunities from the people of South Africa, and in his case, from the development of a sport we love in our country. Corruption must not be tolerated. Those responsible must face the consequences for choosing to act dishonestly. This requires transparency and Minister of Justice has an opportunity to show leadership in this regard and must do so without hesitation.
Issued by Solly Malatsi, DA Shadow Minister of Sports and Recreation, 5 November 2015