Businesses in Sekhukhune district allege non-recognition by provincial health dept

SEKHUKHUNE – Businesses in Sekhukhune allege their companies are sidelined in providing much needed services in the Limpopo Department of Health.

The Local businesses claim tender recommendations are given to companies from Vhembe and Capricorn Districts to provide services in Sekhukhune clinics and hospitals.

They allege that Limpopo MEC for Health, Dr Phophi Ramathuba, influences tender procurement processes to appoint companies owned by “her cronies and relatives”.

These allegations emerge at the background of the health department’s irregular awarding of PPE contracts.

The Latest reports indicated that the Limpopo Health Department awarded a PPE tender worth R185 Million to the company based at Kwazulu-Natal.  A company allegedly owned by Ramathuba’s crony.

The Health Portfolio in the province demanded that a detailed report, on more than R500 Million worth of expenditure, following suspicions of corruption in the procurement of Covid-19 essentials, be made public.

 The National Allied Workers Union (Nehawu) and the Democratic Alliance (DA) earlier called for Premier Chupu Mathabatha to suspend MEC Ramathuba, pending investigations into alleged irregular contracts’ awarding..

However, Mathabatha rejected the call and said the matter of PPE tender irregularities is under investigation by the Special Investigating Unit (SIU).

 Ishmael Tjebane, a business owner in Sekhukhune district, said most of the beneficiaries in the region are coming from Vhembe, which is ‘home of MEC Ramathuba’.

“About 90% of service providers in the health sector are not from this region. They are mainly coming from Vhembe and some of the companies are coming from Capricorn, clearly connected to the MEC, this is a conflict of interest,” he said.

Tjebane said almost all tenders including those of supplying cleaning materials, food supply, security and PPE are awarded to outsiders. “Even those main service providers bring their own people from outside this region. We have a right to benefit. Why should all the money from Sekhukhune benefit people who are not residents of this district. We are not allowed to do business in their region as they prefer to empower local businesses and we understand that,” he said.

Tjabane concluded that their companies are compliant and meeting requirements to render any service to the health institutions.

“We are shocked to learn that even delivery tenders are given to outsiders. Upon our evaluation, we have discovered that some of the companies are not complying at all,” he said.

Limpopo Department of Health Spokesperson Neil Shikwambana said they are waiting for the outcomes of investigations before they can comment.

“All allegations of irregularities particularly those that relates to PPE procurement have been forwarded to the SIU. We will not be able to comment on that until such time that the investigation process is completed,” he said.

Thapelo Motseo

COMPANY BACKGROUND Sekhukhune Times was founded in 2015 for the purpose of providing Sekhukhune community and businesses with quality news. The business is operated within the Sekhukhune district municipality which consist of four municipality namely Fetakgomo Tubatse Local Municipality, Ephraim Mogale Local Municipality, Makhuduthamaga Local Municipality and Elias Motsoaledi Local Municipality . Sekhukhune Times help the readers to become aware of their surroundings from social life, to the news happening in the community and also not forgetting what’s happening on the outside world’ it brings you all the news in a convenient and simple language that community can understand and It is released every Thursday and distributed through various mine, shops, , pubiic institutions and in schools. Complimentary copies are distributed to advertisers. The publication is also available online Sekhukhune Times bring you all the news you need to know about the community, events coming up, speeches and also some tips on surviving student life as well as anything which you feel could be beneficial to students voicing out their opinions. MISSION . To became a cross border publication that will link young people from all corners of the world. . To became a source of information to the youth and community in general. .To became a tool for businesses big and small to market their products. .To serve as a communication tool for businesses, government, school and communities in general. .To offer jobs to young people and thus participate in eradicating unemployment, which is a major contributor to increase in crime, AIDS and poverty in our communities. .Provide auxiliary services such as printing, layout and design and photography for other institutions. . Sekhukhune Times is committed to providing the client with a quality product at competitive price within schedule. . At all time we will address and service the customers, requirements, comply with specifications, standards and technical requirements, act ethically and with dignity

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