SIU rejects Dedani Mkhize’s claims of bias

Johannesburg – The Special Investigating Unit (SIU) has noted a media statement issued by Mr. Dedani Mkhize, the son of Health Minister Dr. Zweli Mkhize, relating to the civil litigation papers filed in the Special Tribunal to have the Digital Vibes contract awarded by the National Department of Health reviewed and set aside, and to recover financial losses suffered by the State.

In the statement Mr. Mkhize puts the integrity and the credibility of the SIU into question, and claims that the Unit made its findings based on newspaper articles. He further claims that he was never afforded an opportunity to clear his name nor notified about the papers filed at the Special Tribunal.

Mr. Mkhize also acknowledges having received money from Ms. Tahera Mather, one of key individuals in the running of the communication firm that scored a R150 million contract to do Covid-19 media campaign.

The SIU would like to place it on record that Mr. Mkhize made written submissions, which were thoroughly considered as part of the investigation. It can therefore not be true that he was not afforded an opportunity to be heard. Mr. Mkhize is cited as a respondent in the papers before the Special Tribunal and he will have a further opportunity to explain circumstances under which the money was exchanged with Ms. Mather. The outcomes of all our investigations are evidence based. We are therefore rejecting Mr. Mkhize’s comment that we have made predetermination on the matter.

The SIU will always do its work with integrity, without fear or favour. We will always abide by the laws of this country. We will not allow anyone to question our integrity and impartiality without any valid reason.

His assertion that he was never notified about the papers shows nothing but lack of understanding of the civil litigation process. The Special Tribunal papers are served on respondents after they are filed to prepare answering affidavits.

As the matter is pending, the SIU will not comment further. We would therefore urge Mr. Mkhize and all other respondents to respond to our papers at the Special Tribunal.

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