COSATU is deeply dismayed government accepted the resignation of the Director-General of the Department of Military Veterans

The Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU) is deeply dismayed government has accepted the resignation of the suspended Director-General of the Department of Military Veterans, Ms. Irene Mpolweni.

Ms. Mpolweni had been on suspension from the Department since March 2023 with regards to various serious allegations of irregular, fruitless and wasteful expenditure valued at over R200 million.  It was alleged that the former DG has illegally interfered in procurement processes circumventing required procedures.

Whilst COSATU celebrates the departure of any incompetent DG who has compromised the ability of the state to fulfill its mandates and played loose with the law, we are appalled that this DG has been allowed to walk away without being held accountable for her actions as required by the law.

This allowing of persons facing serious and at times criminal charges to simply pack their bags, is compromising the African National Congress led government’s welcome and progressive efforts to uproot the cancer of corruption that has become endemic across the state, and in particular in the Department of Military Veterans and the South African National Defence Force. 

Parliament amended the Auditing Act in 2018 requiring the state to hold personally liable officials who have caused the state to lose workers’ hard-earned taxes to corruption or wasteful expenditure. 

COSATU urges the Minister for Defence, Ms. Thandi Modise, to ensure the former DG is held accountable for the charges she faced, including withholding any monies owed to her, e.g. her pension fund.

Good governance will only be built by continuously maintaining a zero-tolerance approach to corruption, mismanagement and malfeasance wherever it may appear in the state and society.

Issued by COSATU

For further information please contact:
Matthew Parks
Acting National Spokesperson & Parliamentary Coordinator 
Cell: 082 785 0687