Hawks probe Gauteng hospital security tenders

Jack Bloom MPL

DA Gauteng Shadow MEC for Health

I am dismayed but not surprised that the Hawks are reportedly investigating allegations of fraud, corruption and money laundering with regard to the R265 million security tender for Gauteng state hospitals.

According to a written reply by Gauteng Health MEC Qedani Mahlangu to my questions in the Gauteng Legislature, the annual hospital security costs have more than doubled from R113 million last year to R265 million in contracts signed with private security companies in September this year.

The most expensive contract is for Charlotte Maxeke Johannesburg Hospital – R25.57 million per year, up from R16.9 million last year.

The contract for the Helen Joseph Hospital, where a nurse was reportedly raped earlier this year, has leaped from R6.5 million to R13.34 million a year.

Other large contracts are as follows:

  • Chris Hani Baragwanath – R21.95 million, up from R12.5 million
  • Steve Biko Academic – R15.55 million, up from R8.2 million
  • George Mukhari – R13.34 million, up from R9.5 million
  • Far East Rand – R13.57 million, up from R3.44 million
  • Kalafong – R11.96 million, up from R5.4 million

I am deeply suspicious about the award process as Mahlangu has refused to give the prices quoted by other security companies for each hospital. She claims that “the department is not in a position to respond to these questions due to confidentiality of the information.”

This is unacceptable withholding of information, which I why I have submitted an application for it to be revealed under the Promotion of Access to Information Act.

It is hugely disappointing that the Gauteng Health Department is yet again being investigated for corruption which drains money that is needed to improve health care.