MINISTER MKHIZE’s REMARKS AT NCOP PERTAINING INVESTIGATION OF DIGITAL VIBES CONTRACT
25 February 2021
With regards to the Daily Maverick article, I wish to advise Honourable Members that early this year, in January, the Director General met with me as part of our weekly reporting meetings. In that meeting he gave me an update on ongoing investigations in the Department. These investigations are based on either audit reports or whistleblowing that would have been received. In relation to Digital Vibes, he advised that the Auditor General had raised specific findings on the deviations that were implemented and found them to be irregular. He informed me that he had resolved to investigate these matters further and the actual contract in order to ensure that the department is not found wanting by having irregular tenders. I fully supported this view and asked him to go ahead. At the time, he sought guidance on whether this must be done by Internal Audit. Given the fact that other investigations had been done externally because of lack of capacity internally to investigate, I advised the Director General to procure the services of an external independent service provider to investigate this.
We very much appreciate and support that- as part of accountability, clean governance and ensuring compliance with the PFMA and Treasury Regulations by the Department- where allegations of irregularities and non-compliance have been brought to our attention through an audit finding or whistleblowing, the Department must interrogate these.
We also welcome the statement by the SIU that they will also investigate these allegations. This is part of the commitment we made that allegations of any form of corruption made must be investigated.
This remains important for the Department of Health as it is expected to continue implementing government’s plan and strategy to our COVID-19 response.
Because these allegations have raised public interest, we do commit that the outcomes of the investigation will be accordingly reported to the public.
For Further Queries
Dr. Lwazi Manzi