Embattled Far East Rand Hospital CEO fired a year into top job
Johannesburg – The Gauteng Department of Health has fired the embattled chief executive of the Far East Rand Hospital Dr Zacharia Mathaba – only a year into his top job.
The department’s spokesperson Kwara Kekana did not divulge reasons behind the dismissal but allegations of corruption have dogged Mathaba for a while now, and on Thursday members of the National Union of Public Service and Allied Workers (NUPSAW) protested at the hospital, calling for his suspension.
NUPSAW said the appointment of Mathaba was meant to inspire confidence and encourage effective and honest management. However, as soon as he arrived, he further entrenched the culture of corruption and victimised whistleblowers, the union said.
“In less than six months NUPSAW members have reported him to the Public Service Commission for issues such as irregular procurement practices, corrupt recruitment practices and continuous and deliberate violation of Covid-19 regulation,“ the union said.
In August, The Star reported there were allegations that Mathaba approved the tender of a company that had inflated its price by 190%.
Zabelo Trading had received a contract in June to build tents and partitions for Covid-19 screening as the company submitting the lowest quote of R139 126.25 during the bidding phase.
The two losing bids had quoted R219 000 and R520 080.
However, after getting the contract, the company then turned back and said it had under-quoted, and revised its price with a new invoice of R404 190, which Mathaba approved.
Last year The Star also reported that Mathaba was appointed chief executive of Far East Rand while still undergoing disciplinary action for gross dishonesty.
This was after he allegedly claimed overtime from September 1 2017 to 2018, and from April 1 2018 to March 31 2019 while still working as a doctor at the Thelle Mogoerane Hospital in Vosloorus.