An internal investigation into a tender worth millions has put Health Minister, Dr Zweli Mkhize in the spotlight.
Digital Vibes, a company linked to Minister Mkhize, was awarded a contract worth R150 million to handle communications related to the National Health Insurance.
The company eventually expanded its services to provide communication about Covid-19 developments.
This included co-ordinating media briefs for Minister Mkhize to address the nation on the public broadcaster, SABC.
The R150 million contract awarded to Digital Vibes has raised eyebrows, and is now being investigated for irregular expenditure.
The investigation has uncovered that those involved in Digital Vibes are close associates of the Health Minister.
On Wednesday 26 May, Minister Mkhize held a media briefing to address the allegations of corruption and his involvement in Digital vibes.
“I do not regard any of the individuals whose names have been mentioned publicly as personal friends, but they are certainly my comrades. I have worked with them in the ordinary course of my political or official duties and this is not unusual.” he said.
The Minister has been called to step down from his position, as the allegations have sparked public outrage.
“The Minister needs to step down so that the SIU can do a proper investigation where there’s no undue political influence, because already what we are looking at here is a grand scale irregular contract which seemingly had political influence attached to it.
“Ultimately, it’s in the interest of the investigation for the Minister to not be in his position in order for this investigation to be done,” said Siviwe Gwarube, Democratic Alliance Shadow Minister of Health.