The biggest opposition party in South Africa says it has requested an investigation into what it claims are overpriced contracts for maintaining ministers’ opulent houses.
This comes after the ANC government revealed that between 2019 and 2022 it had spent nearly $5m (£4m) maintaining dozens of properties occupied by public servants.
The controversy adds pressure on President Cyril Ramaphosa, who was elected on promises to root out corruption after his predecessor Jacob Zuma’s term was marred by political and financial scandals.
Adding South African spice to an old joke, the opposition Democratic Alliance says “at least we finally can answer the question of how much money it takes for ANC cadres to replace a lightbulb”.
Alleging brazen corruption, it says the bill for bulbs was almost a $1,000 at one ministerial mansion in Pretoria.
Then there was the $70,000 kitchen renovation and $2.5m spent on generators in ministers’ homes – while most have been struggling with South Africa‘s worst power cuts.
It is already the most unequal country in the world. Corruption may be making the chasm between the “haves” and the “have nots” even wider.