Mkhize says he understands outrage over Digital Vibes scandal

The minister briefed the media on Wednesday morning about the outcomes of an independent report compiled by Ngubane tax assurance advisory firm, which confirmed that the contract was irregular and constituted fruitless and wasteful expenditure.

FILE: Health Minister Zweli Mhkize. Picture: Abigail Javier/EWN

JOHANNESBURG - Health Minister Zweli Mkhize said that he was shocked, saddened and understood the public's outrage after a forensic investigation found that a R150 million communications contract with communications company, Digital Vibes, was not above board.

The minister briefed the media on Wednesday morning about the outcomes of an independent report compiled by Ngubane tax assurance advisory firm, which confirmed that the contract was irregular and constituted fruitless and wasteful expenditure.

READ
Mkhize: I didn't personally benefit from R150 million Digital Vibes contract
Mkhize: Digital Vibes contract was irregular & wasteful, investigators find
Mkhize: plans in place to recover money from Digital Vibes

Mkhize insisted that he was not linked to those implicated in the scandal - his close associates - and that he had not benefitted from the department being overcharged by the company from 2019.

Journalists woke up to a hurried and last-minute invite to a media briefing just before 5am on Wednesday morning, which was due to take place in under three hours.

After 7:30am, Mkhize finally broke his silence on serious allegations that had been dogging his department but many questions remain unanswered.

Mkhize said that he could not divulge too much information as processes still needed to be followed, including the conclusion of the Special Investigating Unit (SIU)'s probe.

"We have been legally advised that we cannot fully disclose the details of the report at this stage or the plan of action that is already under way. Detailed public disclosure may jeopardise remedial action that is being undertaken," Mkhize said.

The minister only gave answers to a few selected questions.

He insisted that his office would continue to cooperate with the investigations to get to the bottom of the scandal.

WATCH: Mkhize denies benefitting from 'irregular' Digital Vibes contract

Download the Eyewitness News app to your iOS or Android device.