Makhura wants officials implicated in PPE scandal to face jail time
Gauteng Premier David Makhura says he wants all the “corrupt people” who were allegedly involved in the irregular acquisition of personal protective equipment for his government to face jail time.
Makhura's statement comes as he reacted to the reports of irregular allocation of contracts worth R2.2 billion by the Gauteng Health department under Health MEC Bandile Masuku.
According to Makhura, the trouble began when the National Treasury issued a circular that the procurement of PPEs should be centralised in the Gauteng Health Department.
“As a result of the circular, certain officials distributed purchase orders to various companies for them to procure PPEs. It does not mean that the amounts which are reported in the media were actually paid to the companies,” said Makhura.
He, however, said the Gauteng Treasury alerted him about the abuse of the procurement processes in the department following their preliminary audit report.
Makhura, who is also the province's ANC chairperson, said the Gauteng Audit Services (GAS) red-flagged several companies that were awarded tenders without being in the government database.
Makhura revealed that the Audit Services saved his government from paying R1 billion to those companies, some of them who have been flagged down as "rogue".
Makhura did not provide the details of the companies including reports that President Cyril Ramaphosa’s son Andile Ramaphosa was one of the recipients.
“Let us wait for the forensic investigation of the Special Investigative Unit,” he said.
In a bid to stem out malfeasance and deal with the recent tender saga, he indicated several officials of the Health Department will be subjected to internal investigations for the alleged involvement in the tender irregularities.
Makhura also announced Gauteng MEC for Transport and Roads Jacob Mamabolo will act in Masuku’s portfolio until after the outcome of the investigation against him conducted by the ANC’s integrity committee in Gauteng.