Gauteng government breaks down R2.1bn Covid-19 spend

A woman carries a food hamper, masks, soap and sanitiser during a distribution organised by different charities at the Iterileng informal settlement near Laudium, Pretoria, on May 20, 2020. (Photo by MARCO LONGARI / AFP)

Gauteng government plans to publish expenditure reports each month from now on, ‘to enable oversight bodies and other interested stakeholders to properly scrutinise it’.

Gauteng Treasury on Monday published a full list of companies involved in providing goods and services during the Covid-19 pandemic thus far. 

In line with Premier David Makhura’s promise to increase transparency and accountability, the Covid-19 Expenditure Disclosure Report, the first of its kind, has provided company details of those involved in relief efforts from April to July. 

Makhura has been on the wrong side of social media posts alleging that he and his girlfriend had benefitted from personal protective equipment (PPE) tender corruption.

The posts alleged that Makhura had favoured businessman Hamilton Ndolvu’s multimillion-rand PPE tender.

Since the allegations, he threatened to take legal action against anyone circulating the fake news. 

But the most significant alleged scandal tainting large-scale relief efforts during the pandemic involves the husband of President Cyril Ramaphosa’s spokesperson, Khusela Diko. 

Thandisizwe Diko’s Royal Bhaca Projects company scored two contracts worth R125 million from the Gauteng department of health. Diko has been on a leave of absence since the allegations emerged. 

ANC secretary-general Ace Magashule’s sons were also accused of raking in more than R2 million in PPE tender contracts, and former ANC MP Nomvula Mokonyane’s was also alleged to have benefitted from a tender deal. 

What’s in the report

According to the report, since Ramaphosa declared a state of disaster due to the outbreak on 15 March, provincial departments have spent more than R2 billion on Covid-19-related goods and services.

Just over 91% of the spend, or R1,939,319,260, was for the Gauteng health department, “since procurement of Covid-19 PPE items was centralised”. 

However, due to “increased non-compliance to supply chain management prescripts,” the decision was made by the health department in Gauteng to decentralise the procurement of PPE on 1 July. 

More than R15 million has been spent on education, over R5 million has been spent on agriculture and rural development, with infrastructure development to the tune of more than R58 million.

R948,539,654 has been spent on medical supplies to date. This includes gloves, masks, respirators, visors, boot covers and thermometers. 

The company who was paid the highest amount for medical supplies was Dinaane Consulting Services, totalling R116,950,000.

Washing and cleaning detergents cost more than R438 million, and included sanitiser and disinfectants. 

The highest-paid washing and cleaning detergents was Nkhane Projects and Supply, who was paid just under R59 million. 

A Covid-19-related petty cash payment of more than R42 million was excluded from the total Covid-19 payments made by the Gauteng health department. 

The Office of the Premier has paid R8,483,878 for Covid-19 goods and services. 

Gauteng provincial treasury has so far paid R81,930, including petty cash of R3,000.40. 

The department of roads and transport has forked out R679,517, which includes a R1,284.50 payment used to procure PPE and related items. 

Social development costs currently stand at more than R78 million, which excludes an interdepartmental payment of R825,390. 

Just over R1 million has been spent on sports, recreation, arts and culture.

Gauteng government plans to publish expenditure reports each month from now on, “to enable oversight bodies and other interested stakeholders to properly scrutinise it”. 

You can access upcoming expenditure reports here

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