Health Minister Dr Zweli Mkhize has been contesting his innocence in the dodgy R150 million contract awarded to Digital Vibes, a communications company where two close associates of his worked as consultants.
“Let me categorically state that I have not personally benefited from this contract,” Mkhize had said over the contract. He also denied having influenced the awarding of the contract to Tahera Mather and Naadhira Mitha.
However, thanks to Daily Maverick – the minister may have just been busted and will now have some explaining to do.
According to the publication’s latest findings, R300 000 was transferred to All Out Trading, a company owned by Mkhize’s son, Dedani, back in May 2020.
More financial links between Mkhize and Digital Vibes
That’s not all, it was further revealed that in the subsequent two months, Digital Vibes footed the bill for maintenance work to the tune of R7 000, at a townhouse in the plush neighbourhood of Bryanston, in Johannesburg. The property was sold earlier this year, but according to Daily Maverick, at the time of the work being done on the home, it was owned by the ZLM Trust, of which one of its executors is Dr Zweli Mkhize’s wife, May Mkhize.
While Mkhize confirmed they had owned the home, she denied the maintenance work was in any way linked to the Digital Vibes contract.
“All matters that have related to the upkeep, maintenance etc were always reported to me. Just like any household we have attended to a few minor maintenance, electrical or plumbing issues over the years, but I have never requested Digital Vibes or any of its representatives to make a single payment towards such upkeep,” Mkhize’s wife is quoted as saying.
“I am now taken aback that there were contractors who were paid by third parties without my knowledge.”
The latest revelations will undoubtedly spark further outrage and prompt more calls for Mkhize to be removed from his post. Should the SIU probe and findings essentially coincide with the latest report, President Cyril Ramaphosa will have no other option but to axe his minister – whether he does, will be the million dollar question.