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Nhleko said 12 employees from the department were found to be involved in overspending in the R246 million upgrade of President Jacob Zuma's Nkandla home.

He was responding to a parliamentary question from Democratic Alliance leader Mmusi Maimane.

Massive price escalations first came to light in 2009. The Special Investigating Unit was tasked with investigating the project in 2013 and former public protector Thuli Madonsela released her Secure in Comfort report into the upgrades in 2014.

Nhleko said disciplinary charges had been brought against all 12 of the officials. One of them had pleaded guilty and was found guilty of misconduct. His penalty was suspension without pay and a final written warning. Another of the 12 had since died. Disciplinary procedures against the remaining 10 had commenced‚ said Nhleko in his response.

He would not name those involved‚ as Maimane had requested‚ because the processes had not been finalised. Six of them had received performance bonuses in the past five years.

The total amounts paid in performance bonuses to them ranged from R11‚205 to R60‚766.

Nhleko meanwhile said that the National Prosecuting Authority had declined to prosecute three former public works officials named in the Special Investigating Unit report into the overspending.

He said a civil claim against architectural firm Makhanya architects was pending at the High Court in KwaZulu-Natal.