The SIU has made findings against Zweli Mkhize.
Sharon Seretlo, Gallo Images
- The Special Investigating Unit wants to recover R150 million the national Department of Health paid to communication company Digital Vibes.
- The unit believes Mkhize and his family benefitted to the tune of R4 million from the contract.
- But Mkhize believes that the SIU report is flawed.
The Special Investigating Unit (SIU) has accused former health minister Zweli Mkhize of unlawful and improper conduct and wants his family to repay R4 million which they allegedly benefited from as a result of the awarding of a communications contract.
According to Business Day, the SIU filed papers with the Special Tribunal on Thursday, seeking to recover R150 million in total, which the national Department of Health (DoH) paid to a company called Digital Vibes in terms of the contract.
The publication reported that the SIU said Mkhize had put pressure on health department director-general Malebona Matsoso via repeated text messages to approve the awarding of the contract to Digital Vibes, a company linked to Tahera Mather and Naadhira Mitha, his former adviser and an ex-secretary respectively.
“At best, this conduct on the part of the minister was improper and, at worst, the conduct of the minister was unlawful,” the unit said in the papers.
Digital Vibes, which has close connections to Mkhize, was contracted for communications relating to the country’s National Health Insurance (NHI) campaign in 2019, and the work was later expanded to include Covid-19-related communication, News24 reported.
The SIU made damning findings against Mkhize, who allegedly benefitted from the R150 million contract.
Earlier this month, Mkhize resigned but he maintains that the SIU report, which implicates him, is flawed. In his resignation letter, Mkhize said the SIU had not given him a fair hearing, but he thought it was best to step down.
He said this was “in order to bring certainty and stability to this important portfolio”. Mkhize accused the SIU of working with “a predetermined outcome and a closed mind”.
He said the unit proceeded unfairly and compiled a “flawed and unfounded report”.
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