Health Boss Loses Job Over Dodgy PPE Tenders

A chief director with the Gauteng health department has been fired for her part in dodgy Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) tenders.

Commenting on the matter, the SIU on Monday said: “it welcomes the dismissal of Ms. Thandiwe Pino, Chief Director: Supply Chain and Asset Management at Gauteng Department of Health”.

The SIU said Pino was dismissed for her involvement in the irregular awarding of contracts relating PPE.

Her dismissal comes after the SIU investigated allegations of maladministration, greed, nepotism, and corruption in the appointment of service providers by the health department to supply PPE and related goods and services.

Allegations were that Royal Bhaca Projects (Pty) Ltd (“Royal Bhaca”) was irregularly awarded a contract to the value of R125 million.

“The health department contract to supply various PPE items was awarded due to Royal Bhaca director’s close proximity to the MEC of health department, Dr. Bandile Masuku,” said the SIU.

Masuku, who was relieved of his MEC job, denies any wrong doing.

Ledla Structural Development (PTY) Ltd (“Ledla”), a company with links to Royal Bhaca, was appointed by the health department to provide PPE to the value of R139 million.

Beadica 423 cc (“Beadica”) Beadica was awarded a contract to supply PPE to the value of R68.5 million to the health department.

The SIU said its investigation revealed that proper procurement processes were not followed in awarding contracts to Royal Bacha, Ledla, and Beadica.

The tenders were irregularly awarded by the former Chief Financial Officer, Kabelo Lehloenya, and Pino.

Lehloenya resigned when the allegations surfaced.

The SIU said it was granted a preservation order by the Special Tribunal to freeze her pension benefits pending the finalisation of civil action against her.

The SIU said it gave the health department evidence that led to disciplinary action against Pino.

She was found to have contravened the Public Finance Management Act, the Preferential Procurement Policy Framework Act: Regulations, and the Supply Chain Management policies of the health department.

Pino also failed to adhere to the Code of Conduct of the Public Service.

The health department actioned the referral by the SIU and instituted disciplinary charges against Pino.

The SIU said it was informed that Pino was found guilty on the disciplinary charges and a sanction of dismissal was made.