The Special Investigating Unit (SIU) says it refutes any assertion that it is not up to the job or not equipped to investigate allegations of fraud, corruption and maladministration at the University of Fort Hare (UFH).
The allegations stem from reports that the university had been awarding degrees and enrolling students irregularly.
“The SIU confirms that it is mandated by law and more than equipped and has the required skills, experience and capacity to investigate the allegations received. The SIU has been fulfilling its mandate for more than 26 years.
“The investigation at the University of Fort Hare has proceeded well thus far and uncovered evidence that is currently being assessed for the purposes of informing the findings and actions to be taken,” the SIU said.
The SIU acknowledged a legal challenge that has been instituted to test the legality of the proclamation empowering the unit to conduct an investigation into the university.
The proclamation was issued in 2022 by President Cyril Ramaphosa and is being challenged by Eastern Cape Premier Oscar Mabuyane, who allegedly received admission into the Master’s in Public Administration programme, allegedly without meeting admission requirements.
“The SIU is mindful that the proclamation and some aspects of the investigation have been challenged in the High Court and the matter is pending at court.
“However, due to the assertions covered in the media having the effect of misleading the public, the SIU was left with no option but to set the public record straight,” the SIU maintained.