SA construction firms accused of World Cup collusion

Soccer City in Johannesburg Image copyright AFP
Image caption Soccer City in Johannesburg which hosted the 2010 World Cup final, is one of the projects being investigated

Several of South Africa's top construction firms have been accused of colluding over contracts in the run-up to the 2010 football World Cup.

The country's Competition Commission has referred four companies to the Competition Tribunal.

It claims they acted in concert when bidding for contracts to build stadiums for the tournament.

South Africa spent 20bn rand ($2bn; 1.4bn euros) building and revamping 10 stadiums for the 2010 World Cup.

The firms that have been referred to the tribunal are WBHO, Group Five, Stefanutti and Basil Read.

'Collusive tendering'

The move by the Competition Commission paves the way for possible prosecutions.

The Commission said the firms involved all deny the allegations.

"They have denied collusive tendering, but we have evidence that they were involved in such behaviour," said Mava Scott, the spokesman for the Competition Commission.

"These firms colluded when bidding for tenders... by, among others, allocating tenders among themselves and agreeing on profit margins to be achieved from these tenders," the Commission added in a statement.

Image copyright AFP

Five of the stadiums were built especially for the tournament, including Soccer City in Soweto, which hosted the final.

Experts said the process that now follows the referrals is expected to take some time because of the complex legal issues involved.

However, analysts will be closely watching developments, not least because some of the companies are prominent listings on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange.

Related Topics

More on this story