Gauteng Health MEC ducks question on Tembisa Hospital corruption

Gauteng Health MEC Nomathemba Mokgethi today ducked my questions at a sitting of the Gauteng Legislature on why a forensic investigation into suspicious payments by the Tembisa Hospital was not done a year ago when murdered whistleblower Babita Deokaran requested it.

According to Mokgethi, there was no official request by Babita, so she declined to give an answer as to why no investigation was done when Babita reportedly flagged the payments and asked the CFO Lerato Madyo to investigate them.

I think that the MEC is being disingenuous by referring to an “official” request for an investigation. According to the evidence in the News24 investigation which is specifically referred to in my question, she had made the request by email and in WhatsApp messages.

Mokgethi also declined to comment on my follow-up question for her to respond to the SANCO statement in June this year that there was corruption at the Tembisa Hospital and that she was allegedly the “mastermind” behind the tender procurement corruption.

It is unacceptable that the Health MEC ducks questions and refuses to take accountability in this serious matter.

Why did she not ensure that there was a thorough probe of everything that Babita was concerned about before she was murdered by people who wanted to silence her?

I suspect that the MEC was part of the cover-up at Tembisa Hospital because it is linked to senior ANC officials in Gauteng.

We know, for instance, that Sello Sekhokho, the treasurer-general of the ANC’s Ekurhuleni region, got three tenders worth R2.3 million for over-priced goods at the hospital.

Gauteng Premier David Makhura is also delinquent in not ensuring a proper investigation was done a year ago.

It is important that politicians do not escape accountability rather than solely blaming errant officials.