SIU granted order to freeze accounts of Gauteng hospital upgrade contractors
The Special Investigating Unit (SIU) has been granted an order to freeze R7.9m held in the accounts of a service provider and contractor appointed by the Gauteng health department to refurbish the AngloGold Ashanti Hospital near Carletonville.
The order was granted by the special tribunal last week.
SIU spokesperson Kaizer Kganyago said it “has reasonable grounds to believe the funds are the proceeds of unlawful activity and fall to be forfeited to the state, or otherwise dealt with as part of proposed review proceedings to set aside the contracts of all the professional service providers and contractors involved in the refurbishment” of the hospital.
Kganyago said the tribunal order prohibits the service provider and contractor “from dealing in any manner with the money held in the bank accounts pending the final review proceedings to be instituted by the SIU within 60 days of the date of the order.
“The SIU was, in terms of Proclamation No R.23 of 2020, directed by President Cyril Ramaphosa to investigate allegations of corruption, malpractice, maladministration and irregularities in the procurement of and contracting for goods, works and/or services (including leased accommodation) during the Covid-19 state of disaster, and in respect of resulting payments.”
The hospital received its first five patients three months ago, TimesLIVE reported. However, only 80 of the 181 beds were handed over because two of the three hospital wings were yet to reach standards of compliance.
Gauteng infrastructure and development MEC Tasneem Motara said R460m was spent on refurbishments.
“It was a hospital built for the mining community at the time but it was not up to current building standards and it was not adequate for high care or ICU. We had to do a lot of changes and renovations.”
The renovations included removing asbestos roofing, adding air-conditioning and water tanks, building a mortuary, creating a waste area and adding partitions to the hospital. More ablution facilities had to be added, along with showers, kitchens, sluice rooms, office spaces, donning and docking areas. They also had to create waiting areas and administration blocks.
Health MEC Nomathemba Mokgethi said they hoped the opening of the facility would ease the burden on other West Rand facilities, particularly Dr Yusuf Dadoo Hospital and Leratong Hospital.