Due to their "strained" relationship, former Minister of Health Zweli Mkhize claims he was ignorant that Digital Vibes awarded his son millions from the proceeds of an R150 million health department procurement.
Dedani Mkhize earned R3.8 million from the tumultuous deal with Digital Vibes, which is owned by Mkhize's close allies Tahera Mather and Naadhira Mitha, according to the Special Investigating Unit's (SIU) investigation.
Mkhize, on the other hand, stated in court papers filed in Johannesburg's Gauteng High Court that he was unaware of his son's intimate ties to Mather and Mitha and that the SIU's findings were unconstitutional and unlawful.
"My kid and I have a troubled relationship, and we don't talk or see one other very often, I informed the SIU. He is now an adult who is married and runs his own home and business. I write these facts with trepidation and sadness, but they are factual and must be shared "Mkhize contended in a 14 October founding affidavit. After the claims aired in the media, Mkhize stated he rushed to Pietermaritzburg to confront his son.
"I was taken aback. On May 30, 2021, I flew to Pietermaritzburg, where my wife and I faced him. He admitted to having a close personal contact with Ms Mather, which we thought was unusual. They've known each other for a long time and have given each other gifts on several occasions, including in 2020, when Ms Mather was employed by Digital Vibes "Mkhize explained.
He also stated that he had no knowledge of Dedani's private life.
"Unfortunately, like the rest of the public, I had to hear about some of Ms Mather's financial benefits through the media," he stated. According to the SIU investigation, on July 15, 2019, Mkhize sent a WhatsApp message to Precious Matsoso, the department's then-director-general (DG), urging her to resolve the National Health Insurance (NHI) contract with Digital Vibes.
Mkhize stated that the messages were not malevolent in nature, as had been alleged.
"A WhatsApp message in July 2019 to the then-acting director-general of the department to 'kindly sort out contractual agreements' was put to me as evidence by counsel for the SIU, that I had pressure officials in the department. But I explained, I did not involve myself in the appointment of anyone; rather, I wanted to make sure that the appointment of a service provider occurred," he said.
Mkhize stated that he did this to ensure that the NHI campaign "gets off the ground." In 2019, the department hired Digital Vibes for the National Health Insurance (NHI) campaign. He allegedly pressed officials to appoint the Mather and Mitha-owned firm. The SIU said that the department incurred R150 million in irregular spending and R72 million to R80 million in unproductive and wasteful spending.
The SIU identified 20 people who earned roughly R90 million from the R150 million Digital Vibes contract, according to the SIU. According to SIU lead investigator Rajendra Chunilall, Digital Vibes paid 4-Way Maintenance Services R6 720 for repairs at Mkhize's property in August. May Mkhize, his wife, had sought the services. 4-Way Maintenance Services was paid R1 960 on June 4th, R4 760 on July 1st, R650 on September 2nd, and R1 335 in March last year.
We value your feedback. Participate in the discussion by leaving your thoughts on the story in the comments section.
Content created and supplied by: NewsAmple (via Opera News )
Opera News is a free to use platform and the views and opinions expressed herein are solely those of the author and do not represent, reflect or express the views of Opera News. Any/all written content and images displayed are provided by the blogger/author, appear herein as submitted by the blogger/author and are unedited by Opera News. Opera News does not consent to nor does it condone the posting of any content that violates the rights (including the copyrights) of any third party, nor content that may malign, inter alia, any religion, ethnic group, organization, gender, company, or individual. Opera News furthermore does not condone the use of our platform for the purposes encouraging/endorsing hate speech, violation of human rights and/or utterances of a defamatory nature. If the content contained herein violates any of your rights, including those of copyright, and/or violates any the above mentioned factors, you are requested to immediately notify us using via the following email address operanews-external(at)opera.com and/or report the article using the available reporting functionality built into our Platform See More