Outa has updated its 2016 Gauteng Freeway Improvement Project report to present more “detailed” research revealing between R9 and R10 billion in over expenditure.
The organisation today released its position paper, titled “The Road to Excess: A Paper on High Pricing, Collusion and Capture of National Road Construction“, after its first report, which alleged R11 billion was overspent, was debunked as nonfactual and misleading by Sanral, who are in charge of GFIP.
The cost of the project, according to Sanral, is R17.9 billion.
Outa said its latest paper goes broader than a benchmarking exercise to expose the extent of the exorbitant inflation of the GFIP cost to society and has therefore called on various government departments to institute a commission of inquiry into the matter.
“This time around, Outa engaged with experienced industry experts (road construction engineers and quantity surveyors) and conducted a range of price estimation methodologies to arrive at its “fair value” price-tag for GFIP,” it said.
“Using more accurate information, Outa calculates the price of the project to be between R8 billion and R8,7 billin , resulting in an estimated overpayment to the tune of between R9 billion and R10 billion for this project.”
Outa said it will be writing to the Ministers of Transport, Dipuo Pieters and Public Enterprise, Lynne Brown, to seek their intervention and commitment to introduce a commission of enquiry into the “overexpenditure”, among other things.
It will also lodge complaints with the Public Protector, National Treasury and others, with a view to seeking their intervention.
“Outa would still like to obtain the full tender documents and conduct a detailed and accurate costing exercise of the GFIP, however, until that takes place, we believe in our analysis and conclusions,” Theron said.
“The mere fact that information pertaining to the tenders of the GFIP are not easily accessible to the public – when compared to the availability of other road construction projects undertaken by Sanral – suggests that Sanral is trying to hide something here.”
Outa reiterated that while it has no desire to see the demise of Sanral, it is unfortunate that its relationship with the SOE has been adversarial over the past five years, specifically in relation to etolls.