Richard Sizani Picture: Boxer Ngwenya/African News Agency (ANA)

Johannesburg - The Public Service Commission (PSC) has urged Parliament and nine provincial premiers - including Gauteng’s David Makhura - to deny heads of departments performance bonuses if they failed to pay service providers within 30 days.

PSC chairperson advocate Richard Sizani also revealed that his commission plans to have meetings with portfolio committees in Parliament and provincial legislatures to hold executive authorities and accounting officers’ accountable for “non-payment of suppliers”.

The proposed tough action comes as Gauteng Health MEC Bandile Masuku recently admitted his department has owed service providers more than R1.8 billion for the past six years.

In his explanation, Masuku said: “Amounts outstanding are mainly exceptions caused by invalid purchase order numbers, price differences and/or quality differences between the invoice, goods receipt and purchase order. The department continuously engages with service providers through bilaterals to ensure exceptions are resolved timeously,” Masuku said.

Masuku was replying to written questions asked in the Gauteng provincial legislature by the DA’s spokesperson on health, Jack Bloom.

He told Bloom that “historically” the Gauteng health department had cash flow challenges as “a result of cash which was not aligned with its budget”.

“This resulted in the department’s inability to pay some of the suppliers in full and in being unable to comply with the Public Finance Management Act (PFMA) requirements on payment of suppliers within 30 days,” Masuku said.

Political Bureau