Article by: Natalie Müller
TRENDING: The South African political spectrum has seen prominent leaders marred with allegations of corruption, such as those pertaining to PPE tender corruption, which sees Health Minister Zweli Mkhize in the cynosure of.
According to media reports President Cyril Ramaphosa is already looking for a replacement for the Health Minister, as we may see Minister Mkhize leaving office sooner than expected.
During a media briefing to address the allegations levelled against the Mkhize, President Ramaphosa assured that the investigation into Health Minister Zweli Mkhize and Digital Vibes would not be swept under the carpet. This came as a response to the media, following the Presidency’s Budget Vote Debate at Parliament on Thursday.
Health Minister Dr.Zweli Mkhize has been marred with allegations of corruption, pertaining to a PPE contract awarded to a company trading by the name of Digital Vibes, which is a company that allegedly has close family relations with the Health Minister, where he could stand to have benefited from the contract.
Digital Vibes, the controversial communications firm in public scrutiny, has allegedly secured a R150-million contract from the Department of Health (DoH). It is alleged that at the time of the transaction, the Department of Health had transferred around R50-million to Digital Vibes for services related to the department’s National Health Insurance (NHI) and Covid-19 communications efforts.
A look into the company’s financial records, revealed that the company had allegedly purchased a second-hand vehicle for Dedani Mkhize, who is the Health Minister Zweli Mkhize’s son.
According to renowned news outlet Daily Maverick, Documents obtained by Scorpio revealed that Digital Vibes had transferred R160,000 to a Pietermaritzburg car dealership for a 2003 Toyota Land Cruiser in May of 2020.
According to photographs posted on social media, the vehicle has been put to use at a farm near Pietermaritzburg owned by the minister’s son.
Several members of the political space, from various parties have come out to publicly share their stance on the matter, with many calling on to the President to take action against the said Health Minister.
President @CyrilRamaphosa, unless you speak up on the Digital Vibes irregular contract and follow this with action against the errant Minister of Health Zweli Mkhize, South Africans will be left with no choice but to believe that his behaviour has your blessing.— John Steenhuisen MP (@jsteenhuisen) June 3, 2021
President Cyril Ramaphosa had also said in response to the matter, that as he had done before, he would only act on the allegations, once the Special Investigating Unit (SIU) had finalised its investigation into the matter. It is anticipated for the SIU to have completed its investigation into the matter by the end of June.
During a heated Portfolio Committee Meeting, EFF’s Naledi Chirwa had a firm stance on the protocol and legal obligation, based on the responsibility sworn on him as a minister that he needs to adhere to.
The Digital Vibes issue is serious, it is disturbing, and I am addressing it. pic.twitter.com/JqkU1rJe2k— Cyril Ramaphosa 🇿🇦 #StaySafe (@CyrilRamaphosa) June 3, 2021
“There is dishonesty in this meeting because since last year we have been calling for the minister to resign but he says he can’t resign because there is no link between him and the corruption in regards to digital vibes” Naledi Chirwa.
She went on to say that it is a lie that Zweli Mkhize and the DG can’t speak. There’s no criminal case being pursued by the NPA, only a case opened.
The EFF had raised the matter of SIU and Digital Vibes last year and were constantly being kicked out.
[EFF In Parliament]: EFF MP @NalediChirwa says it is a lie that Zweli Mkhize and the DG can’t speak. There’s no criminal case being pursued by the NPA, only a case opened.— Economic Freedom Fighters (@EFFSouthAfrica) June 4, 2021
The EFF had raised the matter of SIU and Digital Vibes last year and were constantly being kicked out. pic.twitter.com/suOiZ91Hp1
JUST IN: The Public Protector, Advocate Busisiwe Mkhwebane will initiate contempt proceedings against the minister of health Dr. Zweli Mkhize for failing to honor a subpoena, three times. pic.twitter.com/K3dI2YcTxK— Athi Mtongana (@Artii_M) June 3, 2021
This is a developing story, refresh page for updates.