Minister Phaahla thanks Digital Vibes scandal whistleblowers

Joe Phaahla said the SIU’s report showed that indeed blowing the whistle on corruption was one of the most effective mechanisms in the fight against graft.

Health Minister Joe Phaahla at a briefing on 30 September 2021. Picture: GCIS.

JOHANNESBURG - Health Minister Joe Phaahla has thanked corruption whistleblowers for their contribution in exposing the Digital Vibes scandal.

At a briefing on Thursday, Phaahla said he was anxious to conclude disciplinary processes against several department officials accused of wrongdoing by the Special Investigating Unit (SIU). Six officials were served with suspension letters on Thursday.

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The minister said the SIU’s report showed that indeed blowing the whistle on corruption was one of the most effective mechanisms in the fight against graft.

He added it also played a role in encouraging accountability, transparency and high standards of governance in state institutions.

“This blowing of the whistle was taken seriously within the department, and by other institutions such as the SIU, and this stand taken by an individual, and by subsequent witnesses, has brought us to where we are today,” he said.

On the suspensions, Phaahla emphasised disciplinary action is a matter between employer and employee and will be governed by the provisions of the Public Service Act and regulations.

The minister stressed that he wants to deal with the debacle as quickly as possible without distracting government from its COVID-19 response.

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