Disciplinary hearings for top officials implicated in corruption at the Tembisa and Anglo Ashanti hospitals will drag on into next year, costing millions as they are suspended on full pay.
This was revealed in a presentation by the Gauteng Health Department to the Gauteng Legislature Health Portfolio Committee last week.
According to the presentation, both the Chief Financial Officer Lerato Madyo and the Tembisa Hospital CEO Ashley Mthunzi are still on precautionary suspension, and their disciplinary hearings have been postponed to March 2024 pending the outcome of the SIU investigation.
Madyo and Mthunzi were suspended in August last year after media investigations revealed that murdered whistle-blower Babita Deokaran tried to stop R100 million “possibly corrupt” contracts at the hospital, and flagged other transactions worth R850 million.
About R3 million will have been paid to Madyo and Mthunzi by the time their disciplinary hearings take place next year.
The disciplinary hearings of five other implicated officials at the Tembisa Hospital will also continue into the new year.
Another case of slow disciplinary action concerns nine officials suspended after the SIU investigation into the R588 million spent renovating the Anglo Ashanti Hospital in the Far West Rand which is now abandoned.
These officials are from the Infrastructure Development Department and the Gauteng Health Department. Their next disciplinary hearing is set for January 2024. According to the Evidence Leader, the “prospects of success are high as each of these officials are facing several charges and it is unlikely that they will be acquitted of all changes.”
The DA is most concerned by slow discipline against officials accused of irregular activities involving huge amounts of money that should have been used to improve treatment for patients.
Excessive delays also means millions of rands are paid to officials suspended with pay.
Could it be that some cases are dragged out as they could implicate senior ANC officials?
Professional management of disciplinary cases is needed to ensure speedy justice.