Mediosa isn’t a Gupta ATM service: Company responds to controversy

A mobile clinic provided by Mediosa. Picture:
A mobile clinic provided by Mediosa. Picture:

Gupta-linked company Mediosa has responded to the controversy surrounding its health services contract with the Free State and North West departments of health, links to the infamous family and salary non-payments.

“All allegations that have been levelled at Mediosa are patently untrue,” said Inish Merchant, director at Mediosa.

“As a company we have followed all necessary procedures that were stipulated by both the Free State and North West departments of health. We have fulfilled, and in many cases exceeded, all our contractual obligations with both departments of health,” he said.

City Press reported Mediosa received a R30 million advance from the North West health department before it started operating its mobile clinic in the province. The company provided similar services in the Free State health department.

Citing a financial crisis, the company’s managers were reported to have left the country without paying the salaries of more than 100 of its employees.

“Mediosa is currently owed a substantial amount in outstanding payments due by the Free State and North West health departments respectively, which has resulted in the company applying for business rescue in order to continue its operations in South Africa. It is this cash-flow crisis which has additionally seen Mediosa staff negatively impacted,” said the company in a statement.

It is also alleged that Mediosa, formerly known as Cureva, had direct involvement with the Gupta family but the company has denied this.

Last month, Health Minister Aaron Motsoaledi said Mediosa’s services were not needed at all.

“I don’t think I’ll be wrong to characterise it as an ATM card through which the Guptas are withdrawing money from the department of health,” he said.

The company claimed the only assistance it received from the Guptas was with Mediosa’s (then Cureva) management’s visa applications in 2015.

“The company directors emphatically deny having directed any money to the Guptas via Dubai, nor derived any commercial benefit arising from this acquaintanceship. In point of fact, Mediosa has strenuously endeavoured to distance itself from the contentious family in the wake of state capture revelations,” the company said.

“We have received a verbal agreement from the Free State department of health confirming the debt that is owed to Mediosa. Based on this, we are certain the company will soon be a in a far more steady financial position,” said Muhammed Asif Latib, an independent business rescue practitioner appointed by Mediosa.

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