ANC in Gauteng extends Masuku and Diko's leave of absence

22 September 2020 - 07:12
Gauteng health MEC Bandile Masuku
Gauteng health MEC Bandile Masuku
Image: Papi Morake

Gauteng health MEC Bandile Masuku, his wife Johannesburg MMC Loyiso Masuku and presidential spokesperson Khusela Diko will have to wait a little longer to know their fate.

This after the ANC in Gauteng decided to extend their leave of absence by at least three weeks as they deal with the contents of the party’s integrity commission’s report.

The ANC Gauteng provincial executive committee (PEC) has decided against adopting the report by its integrity commission which, according to insiders, was riddled with inconsistencies, contradictions and provided inadequate information.

The trio was placed on a month-long leave in July after the much-publicised personal protective equipment (PPE) scandal in Masuku’s department.

The scandal saw Diko’s husband AmaBhaca chief Thandiziwe Diko’s company, Royal Bhaca, awarded a multimillion-rand Covid-19 PPE tender. The Masukus and the Dikos are close family friends.

The two-day robust PEC meeting is said to have argued along factional lines between those who supported the report that called for Masuku to voluntarily step down, while the other group wanted the PIC report that was scathing on the MEC to be sent back for review and amend inconsistencies.

The meeting was torn between adopting or rejecting the report, which is said to be scathing especially on the leadership qualities of Masuku, stating that he failed in his oversight roles.

The meeting, after hearing views to send the report back to the integrity commission to amend the inconsistencies, at the end agreed that it should instead be sent to the provincial working committee (PWC) to deliberate on it further instead of the PIC.

Sowetan understands that the PEC has given the PWC until October 10 to report back with an amended integrity commission report.

Spokesperson for the presidency Khusela Diko
Spokesperson for the presidency Khusela Diko
Image: Twitter/Khusela Diko

“No we said the report has flaws and that you must go and fix those flaws. That was everybody’s statement who spoke on this,” an insider said.

“So it goes to the PWC because the PEC would have guided it to say go look at this document and that one.”

The insider said that they agreed the report was “not really conclusive. It’s not really contradictions but it misses certain things and comrades said they were not happy”.

The Sunday Times reported that Masuku challenged the findings of the integrity commission that he did not exercise sufficient oversight at the health department.

The report is also said to have found that Masuku failed to manage the public perception that he may have benefited from the PPE tenders, which he also disputed in his letter to the integrity commission.

SowetanLIVE understands that those who spoke against the report raised concerns that there were no findings of wrongdoing against him, especially on corruption allegations, but it still called for him to step down.

“You say he must resign voluntarily but there is no wrongdoing that you find. So that's why the PEC felt there was shortcomings with this report.

“We appreciate the report but the PWC will have to look at a few things,” said the insider.

The ANC in Gauteng is expected to make an official announcement on the trio’s leave being extended by Tuesday morning.

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