The South African government is investigating reports of large-scale “looting” of its $26 billion coronavirus rescue package, launched to cushion the economic impact of the pandemic on struggling households.

Amid rising public anger, the ruling ANC party has called a meeting of its National Executive Committee to begin on Friday to probe corruption within its ranks – from the theft of food parcels meant for the poor through to tenders for personal protective equipment. 

President Cyril Ramaphosa took the unprecedented step this week of publishing the names of all companies that had won coronavirus-related contracts – a response to a tide of reports of tenders being farmed out to the families and friends of the well connected.

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