Heads ‘set to roll’ in Gauteng Health Department over dodgy deals

By Baldwin Ndaba Time of article published27m ago

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Johannesburg – Heads are expected to roll in the Gauteng Health Department after senior managers allegedly defied Premier David Makhura’s orders not to pay several companies that were illegally awarded multimillion-rand contracts after the cancellation of their dodgy deals in May.

This is according to other senior officials closer to the investigations into the rot that allegedly engulfed the department soon after President Cyril Ramaphosa announced the lockdown on March 26.

Makhura and the ANC in Gauteng last week revealed that after Ramaphosa’s announcement, some officials issued purchase orders to individuals and companies known to them and allegedly asked to provide services in the department without any bidding for tenders.

A company known as Impela Alliances, owned by Sipho and Ntobeko Majola, was allegedly recruited to assist the department with financial management and to help it fight accruals.

Impela Alliances was allegedly awarded a R140 million contract without any paper trail but Majola insisted that his contract was legitimate and he was now considering taking legal action against the department.

Replying to questions him being among beneficiaries who allegedly looted the state during the Covid-19 pandemic, Majola said his company was contracted to provide a service to the Health Department following its successful delivery of large-scale supply chain transformation projects in a number of private and public sector entities.

“Impela was approached by the Gauteng Department of Health and was subsequently appointed to provide technical support for the implementation of supply chain management and finance reforms.

A contract was signed between it and the Gauteng Department of Health on March 23.

“As far as Impela is concerned, its appointment is valid and lawful and it is unaware of any irregularity or unlawfulness in its appointment or any non-compliance by the Department of Health with appointment procedures,” Majola said.

He maintained that Impala duly rendered services to the department for the period between April and June, for which it was paid in accordance with the contract.

“Impela’s contract was terminated by the department on June 23 (effective from June 30),” he said.

He, however, failed to produce a copy of the contract supporting his claim that he was awarded a contract in March and officially began work in April.

Despite his insistence that he was appointed in March this year, Independent Media has seen a circular written by former chief financial officer Kabelo Lehloenya dated May 11, but officially signed off the next day.

In the circular, Lehloenya wrote to senior managers and chief executives of hospitals and health-care entities under the department saying: “We have a project team assisting the Gauteng Health Department on various aspects of financial reporting for the 2019/2020 financial year-end, with processes and reporting subsequent to the 2019/2020 year end.

“One of the processes that the team is assisting with (is) 2019/2020 accruals/payables. Year-end disclosures and the clearing of old/invalid transactions on the system, thereby assisting the department in ensuring that the monthly reports used to compile accruals/payables is accurate and complete.”

On Tuesday night, Lehloenya referred all inquiries regarding Impela Alliances to the department.

Majola failed to serve papers on the department on Tuesday.

Reacting to the threat, Gauteng Health spokesperson Kwara Kekana said they would respond accordingly if and when legal correspondence was received.

“Anyone found to be involved in any wrongdoing must face the law regardless of whether they are still employed (by) the department.”

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