Parliament to get tough on public health corruption in another Gupta-linked scandal

2018-03-02 16:51
Hospital corridor. (iStock)

Hospital corridor. (iStock)

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Cape Town – The chairperson of Parliament's Portfolio Committee on Health on Friday vowed that the committee would not let corruption take hold in the health sector.

This after it emerged that the North West health department spends millions each month on private ambulances and that a Gupta-linked company is providing mobile clinics in the Free State.

Committee chairperson Lindelwa Dunjwa said in a statement it was outrageous that a government department used private ambulances for emergency medical services (EMS) that should be provided by the state. 

Exacerbating the matter were reports that the Free State health department paid a Gupta-linked company millions to provide mobile clinic services, Dunjwa said.

"We are not taking this kindly and it is unacceptable. We will not allow corruption to rear its ugly head in the health sector," she said.

"It cannot be right that we have private companies performing duties that are a key competency of government. The use of private ambulances is costly and it is negatively impacting on the provincial department's budget. Outsourcing of services such as EMS further impacts on employment opportunities for people who could be directly employed by the state."

The committee will invite the national and all provincial health departments to appear before it to account on these issues in the public domain, Dunjwa said. 

The FF Plus in the Free State said it sent questions to the province's health MEC, Butana Komphela, relating to the contract with Gupta-linked Mediosa. 

"The Guptas' poison reaches beyond the Vrede dairy project and the provincial department of agriculture and the Freedom Front Plus is committed to weeding out the Gupta plague in the Free State," said FF Plus member of the provincial legislature Tammy Wessels.

Read more on:    parliament  |  corruption  |  health

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