SIU raids offices of Alexander Bay Diamonds Company

Thursday, August 11, 2022

The Special Investigating Unit (SIU) and the Hawks are currently raiding the offices of Alexander Bay Diamonds Company PTY LTD (Alexander Bay) in Johannesburg in relation to an ongoing investigation on the affairs of Alexkor, the State’s diamond mining company.

“The SIU received a tip off from a whistle-blower on alleged maladministration in the affairs of Alexkor, in respect of the marketing, valuation, sale and beneficiation of diamonds. The raid of Alexander Bay offices is crucial for the SIU to complete its investigation in the affairs of Alexkor,” the SIU said on Thursday.

The SIU has been authorised by President Cyril Ramaphosa, under Proclamation No. R 45 of 2021, to investigate allegations of corruption and maladministration in respect of marketing, valuation, sale and beneficiation of diamonds, pursuant to agreements concluded between Alexkor and service providers.

On Wednesday the Johannesburg Magistrate Court granted the SIU a warrant to conduct a search and seizure at the premises of Alexander Bay, previously known as Scarlet Sky Investments 60 PTY LTD, and related companies.

Alexander Bay was appointed by Alexkor in 2015, as an external service provider, to perform marketing, valuation, sale and beneficiation in respect of Alexkor Diamonds. The company was allegedly appointed to improve the sales of diamonds, as Alexkor believed that the diamonds were sold below the market value by approximately 30%.

The circumstances and procurement process that followed led to the appointment of Alexander Bay, which is subject to the SIU investigation.

“Alexander Bay has refused to disclose the identity and details around the sale of diamonds to Alexkor and its Chief Executive Officer, citing none disclosure agreement signed with buyers of State diamonds. The company also failed to disclose the details around the sale of diamonds to the State Capture Commission.

“The SIU deemed it necessary to approach the Johannesburg Magistrate Court for a search warrant to seize documents and computers in order to assist with an ongoing investigation, as normal processes to request information was likely to be met with the same attitude,” the SIU said.

The SIU is empowered by the Special Investigating Units and Special Tribunals Act 74 of 1996 (SIU Act) to subpoena bank statements and cellphone records, search and seize evidence, and interrogate witnesses under oath in order to fully investigate allegations brought before the Unit.

The SIU is also empowered to institute civil action in the High Court or a Special Tribunal in its name, to correct any wrongdoing uncovered during both investigations caused by acts of corruption, fraud or maladministration. In line with the SIU Act, the SIU will refer any evidence pointing to criminal conduct it uncovers to the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) for further action. –SAnews.gov.za

 

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