In other health news, Health Minister Zweli Mkhize has been implicated in a tender corruption scandal to the tune of R150 million. 😳 The department of health (DoH) allegedly paid this money to Digital Vibes, an obscure media communications company, which is owned by Mkhize’s friend and long-time associate Tahera Mather. While Daily Maverick’s Pieter Louis-Myburgh broke the news in February, this week he published even more disturbing revelations. The company was allegedly paid millions for setting up media briefings, interviews and other public engagements at the onset of Covid-19. It’s not clear why, because this is something the DoH’s own communications team is responsible for. The R150m was paid out in 18 tranches between January 2020 and February 2021, Daily Maverick reported, and the company was appointed in a closed-tender programme.
In response, Mkhize held a press conference yesterday where he said the contract was “irregular”. Awkward, and also a big knock to Mkhize’s alleged presidential ambitions, as well as the impressive image he cultivated especially in early responses to the pandemic.
This article appeared as part of The Wrap, 15 April 2021. Sign up to receive our weekly updates